Growing pains

I find myself in a conundrum this morning. Raising children is not for the faint of heart. Raising boys, I am finding, is a breeze to raising a daughter. Faith is only 11 and I find myself in very scary, uncharted territory all of a sudden and I am not sure how we got here so quickly.

 A boy is calling. An 11 yr old boy that apparently has a huge crush on my baby girl. Judging from the googly-eyed look when she answers the phone, she reciprocates those feelings. Did I mention she is only ELEVEN?!! Eleven. Last week she was playing with Barbies and going on and on about all the new clothes she wants for said Barbies and this week she is talking to a boy on the phone. I want to cry. I want to rip this boy from limb to limb. I want him to leave my baby alone.

 The rule in our home is that she cannot date until she is 16. No ifs, ands or butts about it. If we had our way she wouldn't date until she was 25.

 I am also discovering that her friends with older sister's become interested in boys much more fervently. They are much more informed about things that I prefer my 11 yr old doesn't know anything about. Get two 11 yr old girls together and have a boy call and the giggles and squeals are non-stop. This is what happened last night. Faith's bff is here for the weekend.

 I don't ever remember being boy crazy at 11 or 12 or even 13. I didn't really date anyone until I was 15. Yes, I had a crush on one or two and I am sure that is all this is... BUT...this is MY baby. My girl. The one that climbs into MY lap for hugs and kisses and asks me to lay with her at night, the little girl that still calls me "MOMMY".

How can she be into boys all of a sudden??? I want to keep her little. I am not ready for this part yet. I am not ready for her to grow up, for boys to want to date her, for boys to call my house at 11:00 p.m. The thought of her kissing some boy makes me want to vomit. I know we are not there yet but trust me when I tell you, I think of it, and it sends me into a tizzy.

 I was having such a good day...then the phone started ringing off the hook, the giggles started &; my heart broke.

She is my baby, my last. The youngest and my only girl. Why do they have to grow so fast? I want to stop time. Freeze it. I want her to keep calling me "mommy" forever. I know this is my issue. I know that I can't keep her small forever. I know that not everyone sees a little girl in her Cinderella dress dancing around my house when they look at her...but I do..and I always will.

 Growing pains. Damn, they hurt.

Project Life...

Well it has been years since I posted on this blog. I have decided to start it up again, I am now do a thing called Project Life. It's a new way of scrapbooking. One that doesn't require anything more than the kit. You don't even need scissors or extra paper. It's simple and it's like a photo album with words. If you are interested in doing this yourself you can check out Becky Higgins web site. There is a video to watch and you can order from there. This is the best thing I have done for myself and my family in a long time. It gives me perspective, records our lives and makes me more aware of what we do in a week. The best part...if I find doing it weekly is too much I can switch to monthly!

Here is the title page of my album:

Project Life Title page

Here is Week 1:
Week 1 combined

I am hoping to be able to use this blog as a jumping off point for my journaling. Every year, before New Year's Day I pick "one little word" and I chose that word to live by all year. This years word is "aspire". I have set many goals for myself this year and I "aspire" to meet all of them.  Maintaining a blog to have a record of my family's life is one of them.

We'll see how I do. I have 2 other card making blogs that I have to keep up with too.

Wish me luck! :)


a piece of me is dying.....

Ray and I have had to make a gut wrenching decision this week. Our beloved little furry girl Casper is sick. She needs many surgeries and her quality of life after the surgeries won't be good. She is miserable. So through tons of tears and heartache we have decided to put her down.

I haven't told my kids. I dread it. We have talked extensively with the vet and she feels it's best for Casper.....and so do we. But my heart is breaking.

In the past 11 months she has become part of me. She follows me everywhere. She is my shadow and my blanket at night, she keeps me company during the day and she is truly a joy in my life.

She is in incredible pain. She has massive bladder stones, a broken cruciax tendon, lesions all over her skin, allergies to everything. She is miserable. The medicines aren't working and it's not fair.

We adopted a very sick girl and I can't make her suffer for my own selfish reasons. Tomorrow at 11:00 a.m she will go to doggy heaven and take a piece of me with her. My she find, peace and most of all comfort. I never realized how much you could love an animal until her. She is our first family pet and losing her is killing me.

Please think of us and especially her tomorrow.


at the stroke of midnight he turned 11......

One, two, three, four, five six, seven,
Eight, nine, ten and now eleven!

Eleven years I've watched you grow,
Eleven years from head to toe.

Eleven years have gone too fast,
What once was the present is now the past.

A baby boy I held so dear
has turned into a TWEEN this year.

And while I know that you must grow
I wish it would go just a little more slow.

A man you will grow to much too soon
I miss the days of "Good Night Moon"

And while I should be oh so glad
a part of me is a little bit sad.

For not so long ago on this cold winter night
Came a boy of great delight

My baby boy that came from heaven
tonight blew the candles and turned eleven.

Happy Birthday to my sweet Boo!

Love you always,

Happy New Year and a lengthy update

So I know I have been bad about blogging. Life has definitely gotten in the way of my computer time. I have taken on way too much these past few months and my New Year resolution is to make time for me and the things I love. Blogging is one of them.
It's now the day after New Years Day and we still have no concrete biopsy results on the tumor in Faith's eye. For those who don't know here is a recap of recent events....

About 3 months ago Faith was goofing around in the mirror making weird faces. She pulled her eyes in a goofy way and she saw this bump. Her eyes had been sore and blood shot for the past few days but we thought nothing of it as the heat had been on for a cold day and I thought it was just irritation to that. She had me look at it and it was a red, yellowish bump that was on the pink skin that surrounds the eyeball, but close to the corner where her tear duct is. I thought it might be a blocked duct but in a weird place as it wasn't touching the lid anywhere near the duct. It pressed on her eyeball when she let it go...hence the irritation. I took her to the Dr.s that week and they put her on an antibiotic eye drop thinking it might be a pink eye or blocked duct. After 2 weeks it didn't go away. I made an appt. with an ophthalmologist at Boston Children's Hospital. After a lengthy visit he didn't know what it was and put her on steroid drops for 2 weeks. We went back and there was no change except it was a little bigger and more irritating. He told me it was a tumor but he wasn't sure what kind. he said "it's not one of the scarier tumors but none-the-less I want to get it out asap and get it under the microscope." He cleared a spot in his calendar and squeezed her in last Thursday (week before Christmas. She did great during the surgery. This past Tuesday we went into Mass Eye & Ear. He expected to have the biopsy results. He checked for them TWICE while we were there. He again said that it didn't have the characteristics of the scarier was the first time he used that nasty C word and my heart dropped. He couldn't answer any of my questions without the biopsy results so here were are. Waiting.

Brenden is home and Taylor was here. It's been a long time since all 7 of us had been together. Taylor came for Christmas and she hasn't been here for a Christmas in Faith's lifetime. It was extra special as Brenden came home too and I love having all my kids home.

The demands of life are on hold this week. I am spending time with the kids and enjoying every minute of it. The battles will continue next week.

School sucks for Brycen this year. The school is a mess and I am in there fighting with them every other day. His classroom teacher up and quit 2 Friday's ago. They hired the substitute they had and he hates her. He comes home miserable every day. They have switched the classrooms around again and he now has a new math class for the THIRD time since September. He has learned nothing this year. The homework they send home is just "busy" work. It's not an extension of anything they are learning about in class, they don't review it and it's a total waste of our time. We spend hours a week trying to write these papers and then he never sees it or hears about the topic again. I'm fed up. We are touring Landmark in January. We are going to try to get a guardian ad litem appointed for Brycen and see if we can't get some form of legal aide for him to fight on his behalf. We can't afford a lawyer. I am completely lost when it comes to this stuff but he needs help and I will do whatever it takes. He deserves and education and he is just falling between the cracks. The new interim principal is FANTASTIC. I love him. He even pulled Brycen in his office to have a heart to heart talk with him about using his voice activated computer as the teachers aren't pushing the issue and they are letting Brycen do whatever he NOT going to happen that way. Brycen doesn't get to make those choices, I do and he is to use that computer. So I rest and get my bearings back this week and go back and fight with everything I have.

Trevor has been sick since July. It's been horrible. He has had sinus infection after sinus infection. We had him allergy tested the Wednesday before Christmas. His dust mite allergy has increased 10 fold. It's really bad and it's going to be life altering for me. Cleaning obsessively...ok more obsessively, especially during the winter. I have slacked. My back hurts so much that it's hard to keep up with the dust but I have to just force myself through the pain. He deserves the best and if it kills me I will make sure his home is as clean as it possible. He deserves a clean air to breathe. Me slacking decreases his quality of life and I can't watch him struggle to breathe anymore. I can't hold that mask over his face in the middle of the night because he can't breathe. He deserves more. He may need to go on weekly allergy shots. While dust mites are huge so are all of natures elements, pine, oak, maple, pollen, rag weed was the worst behind the dust mites and more. I just can't think right now. The poor kid just suffers. My heart breaks. I am praying that we can bypass the weekly shots for a while. They are considered an office visit so it will cost us a lot of money every month to take him for them and I just don't know how we will swing it with all the other medicines we have to pay for. I am going to call Mass Health this week and see if he qualifies. It would help so much if they could help us cover the cost of all these meds. It's just so stressful.

2009 was a hard year. One of the hardest I have ever had to endure in my 43 years. I am praying that 2010 is better. I read a blog and at the beginning of every year she asks her readers to chose a word that they want to live by for that year. Just one word. I think I have two...#1 is Organized and #2 is Fearless...although the 2nd one seems impossible as so much scares me right now. I fear so many things, even as I type this, my heart pounds and I don't think I will be able to live up to instead of applying it directly to my personal life I am going to apply it to my creating life and slowly introduce it into the personal. So organized is my one word. I have lots of list and planning to do. I am going to try can create a schedule from now until next December and use it as a monthly guideline and try to use it as best I can. Wish me luck.

If you had to pick a word what would it be? Leave a comment by clicking on the comment button and let me know.

Lots of love,

PS: the prelim report on Faith came in, a Dr. took a quick look and said it doesn't look "too worrisome". I don't know what that means. Please pray that her Dr. reads the full report and calls me on Monday and that my baby girl is going to be ok.... see "fear".


and so I have been slacking again. I am a bad blogger and unfortunately I have nothing but bad news tonight.

We are all getting sick and this will be short. Brycen, Trevor, Faith and I are coming down with the same thing...flu? We ache, chills, sore throats etc. it's the pits. They have tomorrow off for Veteran's Day and we will be recouping praying it's not H1N1 because my children haven't gotten their shots yet and neither have I. The kids are on the priority list but no call yet. To top it all off I got a call from Brenden tonight....he's very sick. He passed out trying to pee in the middle of the night last night. He had just slept 20 hours and he fainted once but snapped out of it and caught himself as his knees buckled. Then he said it happened again and he woke up on the bathroom floor. He didn't know how long he had been down but he hit his face pretty bad on the toilet seat on the way down.
He was in the campus ER tonight but it was a 2 hour wait. They told him they are closed tomorrow and for him to come back on Thursday. Ray found him an actual hospital in Tempe and I am hoping he went. I will call him tomorrow. I hate that he is so sick and so far away. He did assure me he felt much better today but I won't relax until he sees a Dr..

Faith went to the eye Dr. last week because she has a "pimple" in her eye. He did an extensive eye exam. It was really long. In the end he looked at me and said "I don't know what it is, we are going to try steroid drops for a week or so and if it doesn't go away we will biopsy it to make sure it's not a tumor" yes, I just typed tumor. I can tell you the whole bottom of my world fell out. I can't go there. I can't talk about it and I cant think about it. I just pray 20 million times a day.

Brycen is having very bad days at school. He's falling through the cracks and I am on them every single day. We have already had 2 meetings with the principal, meetings with the teacher, meetings with special ed.. He's frustrated and I am even more than he. Trying to get him to get work done is nearly impossible and I have 2 other kids that need my help too. It's exhausting. I spend hours every night just trying to get through homework.

When I am not working I am trying fix things at the school, get them to appointments, deal with my ever worsening back and just make it through the day. If I haven't called or e-mailed I apologize. I am just trying to get through the days.

So that's in a nutshell. I go into Boston for more injections on the 20th...please pray I get some kind of relief because I really don't know how much more I can handle at this point.

I will keep you updated on them as best I can.

Aunt Carol, thank you so much for the Lidocaine Patches. They came at a perfect time! and for the book! we love it. Faith goes through it all the time to see where we can use a coupon.....she cracks me up. Her favorite words are coupons, sale and clearance! lol

Love you all.

little of this and a little of that

So the injections sucked! sorry I don't have a better word. I am guessing I got an inexperienced "fellowship" dude. He was nice but his skills were lacking. That is the downside of going to Mass General. They are a teaching hospital so all the "real" Dr.s stand aside while the interns and fellowship people do their work....think Grey's Anatomy here. While the xray shows where the needle goes and while it might look good on screen I can tell when it's not in the right place. I kept telling them it wasn't right. I was having major leg pain and I am not supposed to have leg pain. It hasn't gone away yet.

My knee and ankle on my left side have been swollen and I have more pain in my leg than usual. I am still having a hard time sitting, driving is the pits and walking...well that's never really good anyway. I go back in 4 weeks for the right side...hopefully, this dude will be off.

On a good note....I saw a Psychiatrist yesterday. She was awesome and she is mostly the head of a med clinic. I have been asking for Cymbalta for a while now from my regular Dr. He was concerned about mixing my meds so I saw this lady. Cymbalta is normally used for patients with Fibromyalgia. It's used to treat depression too. We are trying to piggy back another med with my regular meds to keep that "i wanna cry all day" feeling away. So please pray it works for me. That it doesn't make me sick and it relieves a little bit of my pain.

Onto other things.....Trevor has been battling swimmer's ear since the end of July. First we got drops, then 3 weeks later an antibiotic and were told he had "strep ear", then on Sept. 2nd his nose and his ears started bleeding....a few times a day. I brought him in. I was told he had a sinus infection and his ears were a mess. (TMI coming) he had thick gobs of this nasty smelling puss just oozing out his ears. I would spend an hour a night just trying to clear what was blocking his ear canals. Along with puss, there was blood and gobs of black ickiness. It was disgusting to say the least. So he was put on a 3rd antibiotic and more ear drops, they also cultured his ear. Two days ago he walked past me and his ear was cracked and bloody and pack full of puss again. I went to scoop a little out and it was a yellowish green. I called the Dr. I told them what was going on again and asked if his cultures came back.....they did that morning....he has a STAFF INFECTION and MOLD growing in his ears. So I panic. MOLD? Trevor is deathly allergic to mold. They wanted me to call an ENT first thing Friday morning. I did.

We saw the ENT at 11:00 yesterday. He took one look and looked at me and said "I can fix it but they are a mess and it's going to hurt a little". Poor guy. He has been through so much already. So they "vacuumed" his ears out. The right ear wasn't too bad but the left (where the swimmers ear originated) was horrible. Poor Trev squeezed my hand and fought those tears. It took a long time. When he finally got past the opening he stopped and told us that the ear canal was completely inflamed and totally raw. He said that it had been infected and moist for so long it was going to take some time to heal. Then he sprayed a powder antibiotic in his ears. The plus side....Trevor can hear again! :)

So, we go back in 2 weeks and do the whole procedure over again. Why do my kids get all the bizarre stuff? Mold in ears? Whoever heard of that?

School is good this far. I took Brycen shopping last night and he did admit that it's very stressful. He's not used to changing classes all the time, he's with a lot of different kids and new teachers. It's a transition year and I expected this. I just need to hold him together until October when he starts counseling again. I have another major fight on my hands with the school. Unknown to me, Brycen was supposed to be trained all summer long on his assisted technology (voice activated computer) I had been fighting with them all last year to start the training and to get the program in. No one told me that they were given special permission for testing. His SPED teacher called me 3 days ago and asked me how it went. I was livid. Livid that no one told me....I could have been pressing the issue, livid that no one called us...isn't that their job? So I think they have been given enough rope to hang themselves...I may give them just a little more for reassurance. Then I will take him into Boston Medical Center for extensive testing and hopefully have enough "ammunition" to get him into Landmark. Landmark is my goal for high school.

Faith's having separation issues from me....I expected that. But she told me this "I LOVE 3rd grade mommy and guess what? Ms. S doesn't yell. She might talk sternly but she doesn't yell"!!! Oh, and she got bumped up an entire reading level yesterday!! on the THIRD DAY of School. My daughter,who loves to read, and I was told that "she doesn't read for meaning" and that "she struggles with her reading and it would be in her best interest to be put on and IEP" got bumped up a level on the 3rd day because she has a teacher who doesn't yell. I feel like she lost 2 very important years and I am so bummed! I am hoping she makes gains hand over fist and gets it all back soon. I love 3rd grade too! :)

That's it for now. I am off to clean, grocery shop and play with my kids! Have a great weekend and try to stay dry! :)