Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. I'd really like for someone to come over and clean my kitchen right now. Any takers?

2. OUCH (with extra emphasis on the CH) is the word you'd most often hear me say if I stubbed my toe.

3. Possession is a word we might hear during that game on Sunday, or is that a different sport?

4.A first grader in my Sunday School class wants to be Captain Jack Sparrow.

5. Marshmallows and fire go together like really well if you've got some chocolate and graham crackers handy.

6.This long, cold and snowy winter just keeps going on and on. Will my feet EVER be warm again?

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to taking Emily and Sarah to a Valentine's Party, tomorrow my plans include cleaning the kitchen (see above) and going to Heinen's to check out their "gluten-free" food section that I've heard so much about and Sunday, I want to go to church and take Rachel to a birthday party while Steve and Benjamin go bowling with the Swamp Rats!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Things are gonna change around here...

As I was pushing my HUGE BJs shopping cart, overflowing with lots of gluten-filled food, Steve called to tell me that the doctor just called and confirmed that Rachel does indeed have Celiac Disease. Wow. We were kind of expecting it but I was still in shock. My sweet little girl can no longer have anything that contains wheat, rye or barley. The part that really gets me is that this is for the rest of her life! She will certainly face many challenges.

On one of the websites I was looking at, it said 97% of people with Celiac Disease are undiagnosed. It will take an average of four years to diagnose them once they start showing symptoms. (It only took us a year and a half.) A child with Celiac Disease will see 8 pediatricians before they are diagnosed! At least we didn't have to go through that many doctors!

We're trying to look at this as a good opportunity to learn a lot about nutrition and make some changes that benefit our whole family. Like it or not, things are gonna change around here!

Don't worry, Benjamin, we'll still have Meatloaf Mondays (just no garlic bread).

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I've fallen and I can't get up!

Emily took 2 steps out the garage door and fell face first into the snow. Unable to move she wasn't sure if she should laugh or cry. But of course I had to snap a picture before I helped her up.

These are my 2 little marshmallows before we headed out. Seriously, it took us longer to get dressed in our many layers than the amount of time these two actually spent outside.

My kids don't get snow days from school but they sure do have extra fun at "recess"! I don't know what the official snowfall total is but I know that it was up to my knees and from the picture of the kids' picnic table it looks like at least a foot, probably more.

Now I have to go deal with the huge, wet mess of a mudroom with all the piles of wet clothes, hats, mittens, etc etc. Blech!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

God showed up in a BIG way

"Come alive at 11:25" is the name of the new Contemporary service at our church. Last Sunday was one of the most powerful and moving worship experiences I have had in a long time. The drummer of the praise team gave a testimony. He challenged us to go out into the world and make a difference because WE CAN. He said it's cold out there.... but it doesn't have to be. God spoke to me through Russ and I am so thankful. I needed to hear those words, to be challenged to get out of my comfort zone and start sharing the love of Jesus with all those around me - not just my family and friends and people I already know.

"And I'll never know how much it cost to see my sins upon that cross" That's a line from one of the praise songs we did on Sunday. I know the song, I've sung it many times along with the radio, but, WOW! When I heard those words and saw them on the screen it brought tears to my eyes. I never thought of it like that before. We'll never truly be able to understand the price He paid for our sins. And to picture my sins up on the cross.

It's the least I can do to try to reach out to those around me with the love of Jesus. I just LOVE IT when I go to church and worship breaks out!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Trash Talk

Friday was another field trip day. This time we headed to the Medina County Solid Waste Central Processing Facility. It wasn't nearly as stinky as I expected it to be. They hand sort tons (literally) of garbage each and every day! Billy Joe Bob who is ALWAYS at the front of the line in Room 1 has some tales to tell! Like the time he found $1200 rubber banded together or $2000 inside a McDonald's bag in a freezer. And guess what? Finder's Keepers!!!! That's right, if no one calls to claim it, the person who finds it gets to keep it! Except in the case of weapons which must be turned over to the police. They do pull out wallets and purses and keys and set them aside while making a reasonable attempt to contact the owner. Billy Joe Bob has recovered jewelery, toys and countless other treasures. I guess the saying, "One man's trash is another man's treasure," is true!
It was fascinating to see the process of sorting the recyclables from the trash. The bags of trash travel on a conveyor belt through Room 1 where large items are pulled. Then to the trumbler which is a huge drum that continuously rotates. Inside the trumbler are huge blades that slice open the trash bags. Any cans (and smaller trash) fall through holes on the sides. This smaller trash and cans travel on a conveyor belt that goes past 2 very strong magnets. The first magnet pulls out the steel and the second magnet pulls out the aluminum. I think the second magnet was called the Eddy Currant Separator. The trash continues along the conveyor belt and rejoins the large trash from the trumbler. Next, it goes through Room 2 where another team of people pull out and sort any remaining items that can be recycled. Sometimes things get past them but for the most part they do an amazing job! Last year they were able to divert almost 50% of what was headed to a landfill. That's incredible!
I hope the kids enjoy these field trips as much as I do. I just love the behind-the-scenes look at how things work. The process of how different things work is always intriguing, or maybe I'm just nosey.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Oh, I am so happy that Benjamin FINALLY got to go outside and play in the snow!

2. In Cleveland, the weather always changes, big and little.

3. During Rachel's ballet class, I went grocery shopping ALL BY MYSELF (woohoo).

4. That's how much lint was in the hose leading from the dryer to the outside? Are you kidding me???

5. Right now I'd like to be soaking in a hot bath.

6. My laptop is my favorite gadget.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _watching a funny movie that makes me laugh until I cry, tomorrow my plans include laundry, cleaning and maybe a little decluttering and Sunday, I want to go to church and get everyone organized and ready for the new week ahead!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Social Studies at its finest!

Social studies was a breeze on Tuesday. Turn on the TV, sit on the couch and watch history in the making. My kids watched their first presidential inauguration and they were SO excited you would have thought we actually voted for this dude!

Steve said Emily must be a Republican!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Sugar Gliders, safety pins and undie pants

We went to West Park Animal Hospital and Rehabilitation Center with our homeschool group for a tour today. This is a state of the art facility and some pets even come from out of state to be treated here. We got to see the operating room, the "ICU", x-ray, ultrasound, cat ward, dog ward, isolation, etc etc. I had no idea there were so many different rooms back there behind the exam rooms. We even got to see a little puppy that was under anesthesia having some stubborn baby teeth removed and then was going to be spayed. We saw an x-ray of a dog that had eaten an open safety pin. The pin had traveled all the way through the digestive system without causing any damage - a miracle to be sure. It was at the very end of the colon and the owner "found it" the next day, if you know what I mean. That's one treasure hunt I wouldn't want to be on! We also got to see an endoscope and heard the story of the Mastiff that had eaten six pairs of his owner's undie pants. They were able to pull them out, still intact, before it caused any real damage (to the dog or the undies)! Rachel thought it was pretty cool that animals have procedures with endoscopes too! Benjamin asked some good questions like, "What's the most unusual animal you have treated?" Answer: Sugar Glider. He also asked some operating room questions. Gotta love those field trip days! Even if the temperature is well below zero. It was -11 when we got up this morning but it had climbed to 3 degrees by this afternoon when we were out and about. Steve stayed home with Sarah and Emily but he will get to go see the animal hospital tomorrow when he goes to pick up Benjamin's new gloves that got left behind:)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

can it BE any colder?

Why yes I think it can be and will be colder tomorrow.

Rachel and I returned to the CCF today to see what's up with her tummy. They are leaning towards Celiac Disease but are not 100% sure. Dr. Mahajan said the more people that have the disease proves to her there's a lot they (the medical professionals) still don't know about it. I guess it presents itself very differently in some patients. We had more blood drawn which is presently on a plane to CA to be genetically tested. I offered to deliver the blood in person, I'm desperate for some sun and warmth! So again we wait and call next week for results.

BTW, the title was supposed to sound like Chandler Bing.

1-2-3..... SURPRISE!!!

Today was Steve's bday and the kids spent the afternoon putting together a surprise party for him. We cleared all the junk off the kitchen table (a major feat right there), added a table cloth and put a 3 and an 8 candle in the lasagna. They made an elaborate paper chain to decorate his chair and a massive crown for the king to wear on his throne. We hung the HAPPY BIRTHDAY banner and we all wore party hats. We turned off the lights and the 5 of us yelled SURPRISE upon his arrival. After dinner there was entertainment. Quite the HSM3 dance show was put on in our family room. Where did these children of mine get these dance moves?????? Must be from their father. We laughed until we cried and our tummies hurt. Who needs DDR when they can freestyle like that? A birthday celebration that will not soon be forgotten for sure!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Emily's funnies

I just love when the babies start putting sentences together:
My finger my better.
My go my home.
My horsie my cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute.
My Shelby my pet him.
I think this is gonna be a "my" kinda day :)

Friday, January 9, 2009

Press 1 for pain, 2 for throw-up burps and 3 for heartburn

Everything went well with Rachel's endoscopy yesterday. She came home with an impedance probe which wasn't exactly fun. She loved pressing the buttons on the attached computer every time she changed positions or activities but having a tube down your throat while trying to eat and drink was the pits. But she was a trooper and we returned today to have the tube removed. It was out before we could bat an eyelash and we were on our way home without having to pay for parking (it was THAT fast)! Her sleep schedule is rather mixed up now and so I'm hoping to get her back on track tonight, the night owl that she is! She slept the day away yesterday and then proceeded to stay up until 3:00 AM at which point I forced her to close her eyes. We go back to get the results of all these lovely tests next Thursday. Hopefully, we'll have some answers and solutions soon!

Earlier in the week Benjamin snuck up to his room and made Rachel a Get Well card that I was instructed to give her a couple minutes after she woke up from the procedure. The "You Go Girl" statement in the card made me chuckle. I gave the card to Rachel while we were waiting for an x-ray and she was quite touched by it and immediately asked for paper to make a Thank You card for him. Unfortunately I didn't have card-making supplies on hand and I think she was still a little out of it from the anesthesia anyways. The love and concern between siblings made my heart melt. They truly do love each other.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Back at it

School is in full swing here at Queensbridge Academy again. It sure is hard to get back into the routine after a 2 week break. Hopefully things will be running smoothly soon (don't hold your breath though). We need to buckle down and work extra hard so that when the warmer weather arrives we'll be able to be outside playing instead of inside trying to finish our school work. I know I know. That's months away but hopefully it will be here before we know it.
I did the first piano lesson with the kids last night since Grandma is in CA. It went much better than I anticipated and we actually had a good time with many laughs. Oh that Rachel and her staccato notes!