Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Abortion from a 12 year old's perspective

Last night our son Shad off handedly asked us what was an abortion as we were cleaning up after supper.  I gulped....so did Jon, we were quiet for a minute.  How do you explain to your child about the killing of other children?  We weren't discussing abortion.  The news wasn't on.  It was an earth shaking question.  When we explained to him....his face actually blanched.  There was a look of disbelief & horror on it.  I truly don't think I've ever seen that look on his normally very happy face.  He asked why didn't the police stop it!  And we had to explain that it is legal in America.  Our 12 year old son was horrified and shocked....yet we adults allow this to continue.

Today Planned Parenthood's director  Cecile Richards had to tell the truth under oath on Capital Hill.  Here is a recap of it, written by Matt Walsh.

Big news happened today. Planned Parenthood testified on Capitol Hill.
Fittingly for an organization that murders 300 thousand children a year, it was a bloodbath. Planned Parenthood lies about literally everything, nothing they say about anything can ever be believed or taken seriously, and every point and every statement they make is either an obvious untruth or a really obvious untruth. You can only imagine, then, what happens when these people are forced to give honest answers under oath. It's like opening an overflowing garbage can after it's been sitting out in the hot sun for a week. Only, in this case the garbage can is filled with the dismembered remains of murdered infants.
The stench of death and lies seeps out of every Planned Parenthood clinic, so when forced for the first time in their history to actually admit to a few basic facts, the results were devastating. Or they should be devastating and they would be if we lived in a culture that possessed even the faintest affection for the truth.
It started badly for Cecile Richards and company when a forensic analysis earlier in the day determined that the undercover Planned Parenthood videos were not manipulated or deceptively edited at all. Even the shills Planned Parenthood hired to investigate the videos last month concluded that there was no "widespread evidence of substantive video manipulation." We've now had two forensics investigation, one paid for by Planned Parenthood, that have both confirmed the authenticity of the videos. Still, Cecil Richards breathlessly repeats the claim that the videos were "doctored" despite two separate investigations -- including her own -- explicitly stating otherwise.

As I said, these people lie about everything. This is the level of dishonesty we're dealing with. Total. Complete. Pathological. They could stare at a brick wall two feet from their faces and tell you it isn't there (of course, I would then insist they run into it headfirst to prove their point). As noted late term abortionist Adolf Hitler once said, if you tell a lie often enough, people will believe it. Planned Parenthood tells the same lies every day, all day, unrelentingly, and the dupes in this choose to country believe it.
Cecile Richards' testimony was disastrous. She was forced to sit quietly as Rep. Chaffetz outlined how Planned Parenthood -- a "non-profit" -- spends millions of dollars on lavish parties, banquets, travel, and exorbitant salaries. The head of the nation's largest abortion provider then reported that her position at this humble little charitable child killing outfit pays her over half a million dollars a year. Next, after repeatedly claiming on the record that Planned Parenthood performs mammograms, she had to admit precisely none of her 600+ clinics conduct the procedure. To be clear: this is a lie she told, a lie her supporters repeated ad nauseum, and a lie she just admitted was a lie under oath. This is a woman with no shame, but I suppose you could expect nothing less from a person who pays activists to throw condoms at presidential candidates (another worthy venture for taxpayers to fund).

Things only got worse for Baby Killers R Us from there. When asked if a child born after a failed abortion would be provided care, she said she'd "never heard of that circumstance happening." It was a fascinating statement considering abortion survivors just testified in front of this very same committee. I guess denying the existence of people who were just in the room was, in her estimation, a better strategy than admitting they'd let the child die right in front of them, as Planned Parenthood officials have testified in the past.
Later, Richards had to confirm that Planned Parenthood raked in 127 million dollars "in excess of revenue" last year, while dramatically reducing the number of "additional services" it provides. Now, I'm no economist, but I'm pretty sure "excess" revenue is the same as profit. So today we learned -- although some of us have known it for years -- that the "non-profit" tax funded Planned Parenthood actually earns over 100 million dollars of profit. Only in the nightmarish fantasy land of pro-abortion propaganda could 127 million dollars in profit equal no dollars in profit. I wonder, precisely at what point does profit become profit? Could Apple call itself non-profit by this logic? Is Microsoft a charity? Is McDonald's really nothing but a philanthropic endeavor? If a company can make nine figures in profit and still be non-profit, haven't we effectively destroyed the meaning of the term?

But the most significant moment came early on when Cecile Richards again confessed to being a dirty rotten liar, admitting that abortion does not account for "3 percent of their business," as she and her minions have repeatedly claimed, but in fact abortion is a full 86 percent of their non-tax funded revenue. As some of us have been saying for years, abortion is almost their entire business. Everything else is a smokescreen. A front. It's like a store that sells old VHS Disney tapes in the front and hardcore porn behind a door in the back. Everyone knows it's really a porn shop. Just like everyone knows Planned Parenthood is an abortion warehouse and nothing more.
Of course, none of this matters much. Planned Parenthood supporters have largely sold their souls and their brains. If you're willing to defend an organization that kills over a quarter of a million human beings every year, I wouldn't expect you to be too concerned about stupid, pesky little things like honesty and truth.
Regardless, we should all take notice of the fact that the entire Planned Parenthood narrative just crumbled and fell apart on live TV this afternoon.
Some might consider this a notable development

So if you are interested in watching it and confirming for yourself what the director of Planned Parenthood said, please feel free to do so.  I watched some of it, it made me sick.  I've watched all the videos that have come out about Planned Parenthood and it was almost more than I could handle.  I watched them like I watch documentaries on the Holocaust, I do it to honor those who died, even though it leaves me with a sick feeling in my stomach. 

How can people allow this?  I guess a 12 year old has it right.....

Wednesday, September 23, 2015


Ok I survived turning 50 years old!
Steve came home for the weekend and we had a great time.  On Saturday he took Shad to a movie and I went and spent some a gift card at the bookstore!  I found another author I really like Victoria Thompson. 
It's so nice to have Steve close enough to come home some weekends...it's just sad to take him back to college on Sunday afternoons!!!  There's always a little hollowness in my stomach when I drop him off.  It's funny I drop him off in the parking lot of the building I lived in 30 years ago this year.  NOW that is ironic to me.  It's one of the few places that has not changed one iota at the college, it's still cramped and hard to get in and out.  On our way out, I was thinking how I used to park my old brown Comet there in that same parking lot....it's just funny/sad to me....

While I was dropping Steve off, Jon took Sarah into Urgent Care.  It seems like she's had too many really wet diapers lately and has been cranky.  She's also had some unusual bruising on her legs.   I was worried about a UTI/Kidney infection and/or anemia.  She did so good to go pee-pee in the little "bonnet" they gave her.  Jon got really stressed about it, but she performed perfectly:)  The blood work....they couldn't do it.  We had to take her back Monday and it took 4 people to hold her down.  Everything came out completely normal.  We are assuming the little round bruises are just from her being active and our floor is not carpeted so it's easier for her to bruise herself .  They just were small and bothered me (I've read too many Care Bridge stories)  I'm thankful she is no where near anemic:)   The doctor (after seeing her in action) just thinks she bumps things, and just keeps right on going. 

Speaking on her just going....today she got herself to the table AND got in a chair by herself!  I turned around and was shocked!!!!   If I hadn't been here alone with the kids, I would have assumed someone helped her but she did it by herself and was quite proud!
This is not the best picture but she was ready to eat!  I'm so proud of her!!!!  She is figuring things out.  The other morning she was halfway down the hall, scooting on her bottom looking for me.  She startled me then too! Exploring is hard for a little blind girl, but I'm so glad she is starting to do it here.  At first she hardly left the couch without one of us carrying her.
We've also been having her "walk" with us holding her hands/arms.  She is doing much better and it works for in the house.  That helps so I don't have to carry her as much.  We've been working with her so much that it's becoming a lot easier for her and for us too.  It seems like that is easier for everyone rather than using a walker inside. 
She is sleeping with me about every other night.  I take her in Steve's room (yeah for a free room) and sleep with her.  We've never been "co-sleepers" with any kid- me and Jon like our sleep way too much for that because you know Kids are not the nicest bedmates!!!  But we've also tried to meet the kids' needs at various times in their lives.  Sarah is a little bit on the roll of sleeping with me.  But when she takes my hand and holds it, it just melts my heart.  We always start her out in her bed and some nights she does fine.  There are times when she wets herself and by the time I have her changed, she is awake enough to know she wants Mama.  It's really not been too hard, I think she's had a lot of changes with the move, the new bed, the floor not having carpet on it (that's a biggie for her- a year ago we stayed at a cabin that had wood floors and she would NOT get on them)  so I hope this will get her over her little hump in the road.   At least I hope that in 20 years I don't have to sleep with her every night!!!!!
OH BTW...the recipe for Italian Pie- I had some mix left over so I cooked it for lunch on Saturday.  I had bought some crescent dough ( reduced fat but still way too many chemicals) It tasted sooooooo good in the crescent rolls that even Steve liked it despite it having spinach in it.   So you can try that if you want to.  It's not as healthy.
Well I'll try and post some more recipes tomorrow.  I had a reader send some really good sounding ones that I need to try, since my people want three hot meals a day. 

Friday, September 18, 2015

Turning 50!

Today is a banner day in our home!  Shad turns 12 and I turn 50!

I can't believe Shad is 12 (nor can I believe I am 50!!!!)

Shad the day he came to the orphanage

And today by the front door!


 At school when I delivered his cake and cookies for his class. 
Next year he will be a teenager!!!!!!!!
Ok his birthday is all fun and games but MINE???   50?????  How the heck did that happen?????
Here's me at about 9 months old. 
At my old year old bday party
My 4 year old bday party with my Uncle Mack.  He moved in with us and I adored him.  He died when I was 12 years old and it devastated me. 
Kindergarten picture 1969
1st grade
 At my 8th bday party with a friend

High school Graduation 1983
College 1986

With my roommate and some close friends at a Sadie Hawkins 1987
I rocked the 80's!


Christmas in college 

Ok IN MY MIND, I feel like the girl in the last few pictures.....LOL  however I KNOW that's not true!
Turning 50- that's huge!  When there's a TV ad on and the business says "we've been in business for 50 years" it makes you think that that business is stable.  It's been there a long time.  Well that's what I'm feeling today. HAHAHAHA!
Honestly I feel in shock, to me 50 seems old.  I apologize to anyone who is reading this who is 50 or older but.....in my mind 50 is not young.  I even got an AARP card in the mail last week!  ME!  Who do those people think they are sending ME a card like that????
I look back over my life, over the stories I was told of hard times that I was too little to know about, and of all the memories I have and I know God is faithful.  There are many things I don't understand, how or why God protected me like He did but I'm so grateful that as a baby and small child, that I found a sanctuary with my great aunt and she chose (at 66 years old) to raise me.   As a mother, I am so grateful to my great aunt Bertha ( Boot Mama- ok we give Southern names)  She saved my life in many ways.  Also as a mother I don't know how she had the energy to do it!
I'm so grateful for the life experiences I've had, both good and bad.  The good ones are precious, the bad ones make me thankful for the good ones!
Who would have thought I'd go to college, graduate and work a career job for years?  I'm not sure I even had those kinds of dreams as a kid. 
I'm amazed that I've been married now for almost 26 years to a wonderful man.  I can hardly believe I have five kids, each with such unique stories.  Me, who never really thought she'd be a mom!  As a child, I remember when Nixon opened the doors of travel to China, never ever thinking for a moment that one day I would go there and adopt a son!  I remember when the Wall fell, watching it on TV with Jon, never knowing what that meant for me- that one day I'd go and stay in Ukraine for weeks while adopting two little girls. 
As a little girl, I'd watch shows based in NYC and I never dreamed that one day I'd live there  and have a son born in Manhattan! Having the experience of giving birth was just amazing. It was awful but at the same time, there was this wonderful boy born to me!  I was privileged to be able to birth a child!  And it's been a privilege to watch him grow into a young adult and go from being his mom, to being a friend also.   
  I got to experience living in NYC, the largest city in our country. Me, just a poor girl from a little tiny pulp wood town in North Florida.  I rode the subways and buses like a native.  I got to explore areas all over the city and out on the island.  What fun!
Of course, I also never would have dreamed that I'd lose twins while living there and almost lose my life in the process.  The whole experience of their death just reminds me of NYC.  I remember walking in the rain to the Upper West Side to meet with an undertaker to do all the paperwork to have them cremated.  That was a hard time.  There's nothing like NYC in the evening, in lightly falling rain.  That will always be a memory to me that I'll hold sacred. 
Growing up only knowing a very few handicapped persons. I never imagined that I'd be the mom of a handicapped child....and then two more.....   I never knew of the privilege I would have to be able to be their mommy.  What a blessing it has been in so many ways.  Although as an avid diaper changer avoider it is very ironic that I have three little ones in diapers at age 50! 
As basically an adopted child myself, I never dreamed when I was younger that I'd have the honor to walk out of two awful orphanages with my children in my arms!   There are no words for it......
Over the years, I've got to travel and see a lot of the USA and aboard.  Things I never even had the dream of doing as a young girl. 
Even the hard times, losing the twins, Sam's birth and early years, Selah's accident.....all of those times helped me to know God better and to cling more tightly to Him.  While I would not chose on my own to go through any of those events, I can look back on them assured of God's grace, provision and sufficiency.   I've learned through it all that God is very faithful!
God's given me some life long friends that I'm so glad that they are in my life.  People I can be real with and who "get me".  Even if we all have busy lives, they are there.
I've got to do some incredible things over the years.  I've seen miracles of provision, I've had the help of an angel while in China (yes really I think so) 
I've managed to still be a pastor's/minister's wife without killing anyone....that's just should be a life time achievement award for me! 
I saw that today and thought it was very fitting for me!
This one too!
I've got some regrets for some stupid things I've done in the past.  Three specific things....and I have a few regrets for some things I did NOT do....  Although some of those things may have caused me to have other regrets LOL!   But all in all I'm pretty happy with my life, and where I am at.  I feel extremely blessed with my husband and children.  They are the stabilizers of my life.  When something goes wrong I remember that NOTHING really matters but what happens in our home.   If somebody gets mad at me or upset with something at church, or in a friendship, other family or whatever.....if it's not between me and one of the other six people that share my house, then it's not worthy of my worry or pain!   I really live by that!  100%!  That causes me to put everything else in perspective!  And it helps me to live calmly. 
It's been an interesting life so far.  I don't know what lies ahead, good or bad.  Of course, I hope ONLY good but I know that is not realistic.  I hope that I'm here on my 100th birthday, writing a blog talking about how young & silly I was when I turned 50!  Ha!  I hope I have a long healthy life ahead so I can take care of my younger children and watch my older ones hit milestones in their lives. 
I'm thankful for every day that God has given me....all  18,263 according to one of my friends!!!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Italian Meat Pies

Tonight was Italian meat pies!  This is a bit more work but soooo good.  The recipe comes from Publix.  It's amazing!!!   I didn't take a picture but I also made a Spinach pie.
10 oz box of chopped spinach (I put in more)
6 slices of salami (we use Applegate brand- no nitrates)
2 pounds of ground meat (1 pd chicken and 1 pd beef)
1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning
1/4 cup of pimientos drained
1/4 cup of pepperoni (Applegate turkey pepperoni)
1 (13.75 oz) jar bruschetta spread
2 eggs
2 cups Italian blend cheese
1 pie crust (I use Fillo dough)
Cook the meat
add the Italian seasoing ( I also use pepper)
Cut into small pieces (I use kitchen scissors) then stir in pepperoni and salami
add the pimientos, spinach and bruschetta.
(You have to defrost and drain the spinach FIRST)
Stir in the eggs and cheese
Then put it in the pie crust
(you can top it with another crust)
or roll it in the Fillo dough
(I spray the top with olive oil)
Bake at 350 till golden brown. 
Pie Crust
I use the Fillo dough but you could use anything, even refrigerated crescent   rolls, or just a regular frozen pie crust or make your own.  That's what I'm planning on doing next.
For the Spinach Pie
a cup of cooked spinach
1 egg
1/2 cup of ricotta cheese
1/2 cup of Italian blend cheese
****** I add flax seed to almost everything- you can't tell it's there and it's good for you!!!!!

I cooked the garlic potatoes with it and brownies
So I try to use organic ingredients when possible.  The brownies are and use no oil.    The Fillo dough is and quite healthy.  I try to cook good interesting food for my family. 
W e rarely eat out ( in one month only twice for me and twice for Jon, his were work related, mine was for fun!)  We will be eating out as a family this weekend to celebrate Shad's and my birthday but we are trying to keep that to once a month. 
We are without a doubt spending far less money and eating a lot  more healthier at home, where I control what goes into our food.  Honestly I like my cooking better than most restaurants, I just wish I could wiggle my nose and it was done and the kitchen cleaned up!  Between diaper changes, housework, eye drops, teachers, therapists, phone calls.....it's hard to cook some days but "Necessity is the Mother of Invention" LOL  I buy very few "easy" foods.  Most of them have stuff in it we don't need so most of our cooking is from scratch or close to it.  I do buy Amy's Organic Bean Burritos for Sam.  When he is hungry, he can't wait, plus he has low blood sugar issues, we have to watch.
Hopefully by next spring, I'll get a garden in.  It's been weird not to have one this summer, although last year's wasn't that great either.  I may just have to get chickens too, we'll see.
Anyway try this recipe, it's so good!  And thank the kiosk at Publix for the recipe.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Library Memories

Well it's been a busy week around here, I know, that's nothing new.  Monday- Thursday are so busy but usually Friday is my free day!  This past week, my close friend took me out to eat for my upcoming birthday and I went to the LIBRARY!

I love libraries, I always have since I was a little girl.  The picture below is the OLD Perry Library.  It originally was the county jail and back years ago, people were hung upstairs.  The librarian, Mrs Parker loved me and let my little gory self go upstairs in the back and see where the executions were done.  I spent many a day at that library, luckily not all of it in the execution room!  I'd pick out all kinds of interesting books to read, but a few times the librarian would put one back.  Hahaha!  I'd love to see what she put back.  Since I started reading at about three, I was reading adult books by the time I was in school. 

Frankly I do not believe in censorship of books.  I've never censored any book that one of my boys have read.  Now if it had been a PICTURE book of nude woman, I'd probably censor that! (Most of the time, I'm trying to get them to read!!!!)  My family as strict as they were in some things, did not censor my books.  Books are ideas that will open your mind and make a person think about what they really believe and think.  I seldom read "Christian" books.  I can't stand any Christian novels I've read except a couple.    I do like Christian autobiographies and biographies.  Most of best selling theology books are not worth my money or time, in my opinion.  Anyhow......
This is the  old library.
Around 1975 or so we had a new library built in Perry.  I was there when they broke ground!  I got a shovel and everything.  Then of course I was there at the dedication.  The newspaper called me "the littlest librarian" LOL  I'm pictured below with Mrs Parker the head librarian.  Yes the dress was originally a "flower girl's dress" in some wedding I was in.  I've been in so many weddings, and in so many hideous dresses,  no wonder I eloped.  My aunt made this dress for me. I think for a wedding at our church. 
When I was in college, I worked so much and was busy with schoolwork all the time.  The only book I remember reading for "pleasure" was 'The Act of Marriage'.  It was a "Christian" sex book.  My friends and I didn't have the nerve to check it out.  Not us, our good names would not be on that book's record!  So we'd get it and take it to the back of the library and read it together!  Oh my gosh it makes me laugh just to think of it!  I will not confess anyone's sin for them....but there are three other girls who were in that group! 
During college I worked in the library.  I started my freshman year.  We were originally in the "old library" over the cafeteria.  Then we moved to the "new library" that still houses the books at SEU.  I helped with that move, it was a BIG job!  The head librarian there, Brother Crammar and his wife became like family to me.  He actually "gave me away" when Jon and I had a ceremony for his family.  He and his wife were very quiet people.  He was a true librarian.  We went to his funeral, it was very quiet except for me.  I bawled and sniffed the whole time.  Jon kept handing me Kleenex.   The family and everyone else was dead quiet (excuse the pun)  When we got into the car to follow the hearse to the graveside, Jon turned to me and said "You do know you were the chief mourner don't you?"  But I loved him!    I regress but have to tell the story of when I went to a funeral with a co-worker.  I did not know the elderly lady, my friend did and hated to miss her funeral.  We were on our way to a meeting so I agreed to stop in for it, assuming it would be a short funeral.  It was short.  My co-worker got very worried when he looked over and I was bawling my eyes out.  Tears were running down my face.  He hustled me out as soon as it was possible, I'm sure hoping someone thought I was a long lost grandniece or something!!!  We get back to the car and he asked me "WHY are you crying?"  I didn't even know this elderly lady.  It was not a particularly sad funeral at all.  It was a very straight forward Catholic funeral.   Sometimes I cry at funerals, copious tears....  Jon says I could have been a mourner back in the day when mourners were paid to cry and wail at funerals.   Sometimes it doesn't bother me as much.  We had this amazing elderly woman in our church, she was just  everything you'd want in an older woman, with so much energy.  All of a sudden, she got sick and no one could figure out what was wrong and then she passed very quickly.  For some reason, I did not cry at her funeral.  It was such a happy fun funeral.  She was such a happy fun person and all we could think of was how happy she was in heaven.  Her heart was so settled, she'd told us just days before how at peace she was....and she really really was at peace.  anyhow....my mind wandered there for a minute.  See what happens when I take a week off.......Ok let me get back to my blog on libraries.........

Where ever we've lived, one of the first things I've done is to find the library and get a card.  When we traveled in ministry, we often stayed at housing that was for missionaries. We would plan our speaking engagements around the housing.  So at one point, we stayed in Hounea Path, South Carolina for three months.  I found the little library and a cat there.  Another time we stayed in Falling Waters, West Virginia  for a few months at our church's campground (in a cabin), I found the library.  Once we moved to Brooklyn New York, I was in heaven!  We had a local library just a couple of blocks away.  But the BIG Brooklyn Library was just a few miles away, off of Prospect Park. 
Wow that picture brings back memories!!!   Then when we moved to NJ for awhile (I'm sorry I do not like NJ!)  I found the little library in Stanhope NJ to spend time in.  It was the one thing that kept me sane while we lived in that god forsaken village of ice.....
Then back to Florida and back to the libraries I know most....  Since living in our small town for 10 years, I have three small libraries to chose from.  One downtown (the worst one even tho it's new), one on the outskirts of town and one in another small town close by.  I was so excited when our town was getting a new library....I shouldn't have been.  Same old books, same grumpy ladies, just a cleaner place.  I've never called a mayor before, but after I visited it for the first time, I called our mayor/city manager to complain.  My feeling was that so much was spent on the building, but the floor space was probably the same size or smaller for books.  There were very few new books, and it seemed a lot less of the old one made the move.  There is plenty of room for computers and that bugs me!  Although out of fairness I will share that we have used the study rooms there for Sam's "GemIIni" program during the move and while we were waiting for WiFi so he would stay caught up on his speech/word recognition program. 
I'm all about books.  I don't want a Kindle or anything like that, I like a book, something I can hold in my hand.  I'm totally old fashioned when it comes to that!
Jon is a reader too.  When we first got married, we were at my grandma's both of us sitting on the couch, READING!  She rolled her eyes and said "Thank God he likes to read too", as if I'd marry someone who didn't love to read.  I do have friends who don't read, I just don't understand them!  HOW can someone not want to read???
Confession time I stayed up till 2 am reading last night although I knew I had to be up early this morning.   Last night I read  Rhoda Janzen  books, 'Mennonite  in a Black Dress' and 'Does This Church Make Me Look Fat'  I was roaring with laughter in some parts! 
We have tons of books.  Before our move, I made him get rid of boxes full and I did the same.  I kept ALL of my Agatha Christie books and some others that I just treasure so much.  One book that I found at a thrift store years ago. is called 'Papa Was A Preacher'  by Alyene Porter.  To this day I can not read that book without laughing out loud.  It's threadbare, but beloved. 
So I encourage you to read, go to your libraries, take your kids.......  find books in thrift stores.  go to bookstores.....  Love books!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

What a Weekend!

We had a great weekend- so busy we didn't even take many pictures!

It started with Shad and me going to pick up Steve for the weekend on Saturday.  He had to work Saturday helping to clean the football stadium for the first home game.  He and Shad went to the game with some of his friends while I went over to a friend's house.  There was a group of about 13 of us  and we ate and played a game until it was time for me to pick the boys up.

Shad had a blast, he wants to be a college student NOW!  LOL

Sunday was church and then some great friends of ours came over.  We went to college with them and we were all young marrieds for awhile.  Then they moved to Rochester NY for 15 years.  We've got to spend a lot of time with them and their growing family because for  the last 8 years we've been going to Rochester for Sam's eye appointments.  They were there for us in a huge way when the accident happened.  Anyhow they've now moved back!  With all five of their kids:)  My kids are very happy to have their friends here and our old group is back together again!  Now we instead of being young marrieds, we are OLD marrieds LOL with adult children!  HOW did that happen??????   Anyhow we've enjoyed the weekend seeing them and are excited to be able to hang out much more frequently than once a year :) 

Then Monday some friends of Steve's came over to help us with the mulch mountain  but it was raining (they told me God loves them more than He loves me!)  so they did help us move around somethings in our storage area and then had the day to play video games and eat. 

Last night we had a family supper of Steak and potatoes (Steve's favorite)  We all spent some time talking and just having a good time

Jon and I got the great idea to sleep on the front porch.  We've spent hours and hours out there this weekend.  So we got the air mattresses out but then Sarah started crying.  So I got her and put her out there with me ( on a twin mattress)  That was NOT working so I moved back to my bed with her.  She cried/whined off and on all night.  She managed to wet the MIDDLE of the bed at 3 am, so she basically laid on me the rest of the night.  This morning she ate fine but was still whining so I gave her some Advil (something I seldom do) and put her to bed where she is sleeping soundly.  I don't know if she is actually sick- she has no symptoms and a great appetite.  It might have just been too much for her this weekend.  We will see if she is still whining, we'll go to the doctor.  It's very different for  her but she can get herself worked up if I'm not with her all the time.  She likes me to be with her and hold her and focus on her ....just a little spoiled.  So maybe this weekend she got tired of sharing mommy and worked herself up a bit.  Some times she has some problems getting her days and nights mixed up now that she is completely blind. 

This morning Jon had a conference to go to and was dropping Steve back at college on the way.....sounds easy right?  NO his van got stuck in our parking area, we all tried to push it out but it was not happening.  So he took my van and Steve.  Shad ended up having to miss school but he always has his books so he got his assignments from his teacher and he is working on them.  We have AAA so we can get the van out.  But I thought I'd try and take down the mulch mountain so there was a safer place for us to park it. 
I got some of it raked down on the back side where someone can park but my arms started shaking and I was getting eaten by mosquitoes!  The guys will just have to work on it.  But I think I got enough down that the other side is safe to park on.  Did you know we are ready for a few dry days??????
So I'm exhausted, but doing all the bed linens this morning so I can't go back to bed!  I did that on purpose so I wouldn't be tempted! 
Hope you all had a great weekend too!!!!

Friday, September 4, 2015

Meet Maxim!

This is Maxim K.  Is he a cutie or what????
He struggles with asthma, cardiomyopathy and undiagnosed mental issues. I believe he is available for adoption also.  I LOVE little red headed kids!   Max needs a sponsor.  Lydia got one as well as another little girl who had just had surgery!!  YEAH!!!!!  Now let's see if we can get one for Max!!!!!
Here's the link to Life 2 Orphans  http://www.life2orphans.org/cms/node/82   You can give on line or you can send a monthly check like we do. 
6326 E. Sandra Terrace, Scottsdale, Arizona 85254
https://www.facebook.com/Life2Orphans?pnref=story  Go like their FB page.  They have a story on it about helping Ukraines caught in the war. 
People have asked me about Life 2 Orphans and I can truly say I saw them IN ACTON daily in my girls' orphanage.  I saw the difference that L2O made.  I saw the relationships that L2O made in the institution.   I believe that if you give to L2O, you are giving to an organization that helps orphans and now war refugees.  They are a wonderful organization.
Now let's get this adorable little guy a monthly sponsor!!!!!  Just $40 a month can CHANGE his life!!!!!!
Ok last night's dinner was soooo easy...
Tacos, yellow rice, black beans and refried beans. 
I use one pound of ground chicken & one pound in ground beef.  Both of them organic.  I also drain the mixture so I get as much fat off as possible. (I give the cats the fat on their cat food-they love it)  With Steve gone, I can sauté all the onions I want in it!!!  And I've found that the food lasts longer too (haha)
The refried beans are fat free and have no unusual additives.  As I've said before, Walmart's Wild Oats organic brand is great, I used their black beans.   AND Wal-mart's "Great Value" Taco Shell brand is the absolute healthiest I have found.  They use high oleic canola oil, which is supposed to be the healthiest oil.  We love yellow rice, this brand does have MSG in it:(  But all that I've found have that in it.  I've thought about making it from scratch but haven't yet. 
Before I shared this next nugget, I made sure that I actually could do it!
I've read that one great way to save money is to just go shopping once or twice a month.  So that's what I've been doing.  And I mean NO shopping in between at all.  I took it to a higher plane, I decided I'd see if we could go without spending one penny for two weeks. 
So over two weeks ago, I went grocery shopping, we paid our bills and we filled up both our cars with gas.  For a little over two weeks, all we did was add gas to one van.  Jon did have to go to one luncheon for work and I did go out to lunch at my son's college.  That was IT!  It really worked. 
So that's my goal again.  I went grocery shopping today, filled up the vans, and paid bills.  My goal is to spend no money for two weeks (except probably gas one more time)  We are adjusting to having a mortgage and a son in college, all at the same time.  We HAVE to cut every corner possible.  It's really been quite an adventure for me.  That sounds silly but it's been fun trying to figure out meals and balance everything.  But don't think I've got too thrifty, I did have to get a pedicure today.   It had been two months and I needed it!!!!!!!
Well it's the weekend and a long one.  Our son is coming home tomorrow and the steaks are ready:)  It will be good to see him. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Chicken Noodle soup & Kim Davis (Kentucky)

My easy recipe for today is Chicken Noodle Soup.  I make it at least bi weekly for Sarah.  Since she eats only pureed food, I make most of her own soups because I don't want her eating from cans.  I'm able to add things in and make it thick and good.

So I start with my big white crock pot -
Use about 6 cups of chicken broth, 2 cans of  cream of chicken soup, a bag of small carrots, 4 or 5 stalks of celery, a cup of green peas, lots of pepper, 2 or 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts.   Turn it on high for a few hours, go back and shred the chicken breasts and add a bag of egg noodles.....YUM!  Nice thick chicken soup.  Then I fill the blender up and puree it.  Then the soup will go into individual serving bowls and be frozen for her.  The rest of  the soup we will eat.

Sam found my cup this morning and he just taught himself how to drink from it. He is so happy!  Always before he has used a sippy cup but he did fine with this.  When we've tried before with a big cup and  he's choked himself by taking in too much drink but not today.  So we've had a couple of wardrobe changes but he's been drinking from the cup all day. 


I feel I would be remiss if I did not write about Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who refuses to issue a marriage license to gay couples.  Since 1998, the state of Kentucky had on its' statute that marriage was between one man and one woman.  In 2004 the voters gave Kentucky Constitution Amendment 1 75% of the vote 
"Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Kentucky. A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized."

Of course in June 2015, the Supreme Court - by a 5-4 vote, made gay marriage legal.
But in my opinion, no one should have the right to make another person violate their conscience .  I was careful about different jobs I took over the years because I did not want to have sell alcohol, cigarettes,  or be involved with anything I felt was questionable.  This woman feels she answers to God over the government and I agree.  I probably would not have had the backbone to do what she is doing, I probably would have just transferred jobs or something BUT I admire her. 
In all of recorded history, marriage has been acknowledged as between "one man and one woman" when it was anything else, it was not considered marriage. 
Of course people say polygamy was discussed in the bible.  Yes, the bible tells of kings and nations who practiced such things.  Even King David and his son King Solomon, but the bible ONLY records what happened.  It did not give its' stamp of approval to the "marriages".  In fact, the bible says that the multitude of wives and concubines is what led Solomon's heart away from God according to the bible. 
The bible says in Genesis 2 :18  "The man said, ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called “woman,” for she was taken out of man.’ For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh."
Jesus upheld marriage in Matthew 19:4  He answered, t“Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, u‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and vthe two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. wWhat therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.”
If Jesus had wanted to say homosexuality and gay marriage was ok- he had the perfect opportunity.   Actually that verse seems to knockout transgender too.....
People want to bring up her past life.  She fully admits to having a messed up sin sick life BEFORE she became a Christian just a few years ago.  By all accounts since then she has strived to follow God.  She probably knows what sin can do to a life, since she was saved from a troubled past.   She realizes that her judge is God. 
I support her and her stance. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Pork Roast and Selah's on the Porch

Last night's supper was soooooo good and totally easy!  We don't eat pork but maybe once a month, but sometimes you just got to have some!  As you can see this is my old, medium size crock pot.  I put the pork roast with ALL the fat cut off (by the butcher) in with an envelope of Zesty Italian dressing mix by Good Seasons.  Just add a 1/2 cup of water, even less if the pork is frozen and leave it alone for a few hours.....my my my my my it is good! It'll make your tongue slap your mouth!

we love potatoes cut up with some onions, sprinkle some Olive oil and garlic on them, add some pepper and coarse salt, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 350 for about an hour....YUM!  We like the little red potatoes the best but any type will work.

I LOVE Walmart's organic brand called "Wild Oats"   There are all kinds of products including a nice mac & cheese

Then for dessert, our favorite Gingerbread.  Its easy and somewhat healthy

 Usually our Gingerbread Man is prettier but Shad was at school and didn't decorate it for me. 
BTW we have a full salad at every meal-before someone gets too worried about carbs.  I was going to bake some Eggplant slices but my eggplant was no good :( 
I've been sharing how Selah is doing and it's been crazy good.  She has been doing very well with her teacher and she is consistently making independent movements.  Today she was lifting her head off the head rest of her chair and holding it for about 5 minutes while she looked around.   She was doing it in her room then we brought her out to the porch and she was so busy.  She kept putting her head down like in the second picture but would fight and resist when we'd try to move it back, SHE wanted it down and she wanted to move it back.  This is the first time she ever fought me when I tried to "help" her.  She'd done it to the nurses before, but never to me like she did today!  I LOVED it!  
 I love when she is stubborn!  She has never ever been consistent with things like she is now in just the last two months. 
I love my La La.  My heart still grieves for the abilities she lost but I am thankful for what she has and how cared for she is.  We have been able to provide her with a home where she has her own suite thanks to the help of Habitat for Humanity.  She doesn't lack for anything.  We just had a nurse come out to interview as a fill in and she was just shocked by Selah's room and equipment.  She kept saying it was like she had her own hospital room.  Selah has a wonderful team of nurses that all love her and are in tune with her needs.  Her doctors tell me time and time again how amazing her body/skin is -how she doesn't look like a "wheelchair bound child" because she is so well cared for by her nurses.  They work together to figure out any little change in her and try to find a quick solution.  I'm so thankful for all that Selah has to meet her every need.  Of course, I pray daily that she didn't need such specialized care and equipment but God has blessed her/us with all that she needs.  She actually is getting a couple of surprises soon that I'll be able to share about when she gets them.....she will really have a rocking room then!   Please keep Selah in your prayers - we love to see progress and we'd really love to see more. 
So we did get some rain but not as much as feared.  Yesterday morning I called a few tree cutting places in town to ask for them to dump off their wood chips.  It sounded like such a great idea at the time, we could fill in the parking area....I was so grateful....(and still am) BUT I see what the weekend holds for us.....  It's highest peak is about 6 foot tall LOL!  Be careful what you ask for.....

Then later, I was on the porch, and hear a CRACK- this big tree limb crashes down and hits our fence and leaves a big nick in it!  Glad it wasn't my head!    Just last weekend, a huge branch fell and missed one of the nurse's cars by inches!!!  We saw that one fall too.  We've had so much rain.   And we have frogs like the plague of Egypt!  Just the other morning I rescued 37 or 41 (sometimes they jumped out of my hand) little tiny frogs off our front porch, yesterday another 11 were set outside in the plants.  I told them to go and work on the mosquitoes! 

Well hope you are all having a good week! 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Shrimp Salad & Potty Training

I thought I'd share some of our favorite easy recipes. This is one of the first ones.   Recipes that are long and involved are not for me.  One of the ladies I used to work with brought in this Shrimp Salad one day to an office luncheon and I was HOOKED!  I've modified it a little to make it a tiny bit more healthy, but it is easy, fast and good!

I start with a bag of peeled and cooked shrimp, so much quicker. Just defrost them in the fridge.  These can be used for anything that calls for shrimp if you don't want to take the to peel and cook them. 
I try to use pasta that is either, whole wheat or like the one below with a veggie serving in it. 
I usually make my own ranch dressing but didn't yesterday.
Then see the little white round thingy?  It is a veggie cutter.  I absolutely adore cucumbers, but they have to be sliced paper thin and this little gadget from Pampered Chef does the job. 

So all you do is boil and drain the pasta
(I usually pour it over the shrimp in the sink in a drainer)
Then add the cucumbers, and ranch dressing.  I top it off with pepper
It's so good! 

This is one of mine and Jon's favorites.  Sam is the only kid that really likes it and this is one meal that can't be pureed! YUCK! 
8 oz of cooked shrimp
box of pasta
jar of ranch dressing
that's all you need!


Look what we got in the mail!  Pull-ups!  We are trying the different brands out to see which ones fit Sam the best then we will order them!  Right now I'm leaning towards the Sleep ones.  He is too big for Pull ups or diapers from a regular store, but only a little bit too big, so it's hard to find the things that will fit him best. 
I am planning to start working on potty training him in October once we are back from our yearly NY doctor visit.  Potty training was the absolute worse part of parenting Steve and Shad.  I'm not looking forward to this at all but the one big difference is Sam is so schedule oriented, that I think he will actually catch on, maybe even sooner than the other boys.  We will see.  I'd love to see him out of diapers!!!!

So we are planning on taking Sam and Sarah to NY in September for their eye exams.  There is some concern about Sam's eye pressure, I get very worried about it if I let myself think too much.  Our local eye specialist is concerned about it but she is not used to dealing with a child with implants.  I'm dreading the long trip, Selah will stay here with her nurses, Steve will be in college.  Shad is probably coming with us. he said he doesn't want to stay with anyone. 
Obviously this trip makes me very anxious on several levels.  Being away from two of my kids makes me more anxious.  I'll dread it until it's done and we are back home!