Monday, November 28, 2005

::before, after::

Completed bedroom makeover. Less than $1000 later! Still looking to get a white chair for the corner.

IKEA was our second home for a while. Rob is the greatest. He even painted the inside of the closets the color of the walls.

Need to take a break from bloggin and work on my contest entries. Way behind.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

::it is well::

I love politics but had, for some reason, pretty much tried to steer clear in this blog. I'm not really sure why. Maybe subconsciously I wanted to "please" all my readers. However, I read a few articles that I felt passionate about recently and felt compelled to post links to them. I also had previously posted a... well... poster showing pictures of republican and democrat women that was meant completely and utterly as a joke and was not in anyway meant to draw political commentary. (I can't imagine I offended any of my liberal readers because my readers are too smart to take offense at anything so ridiculous.)

But it's funny how, when you talk about politics, people come out of the crawlspaces er, woodwork to throw firey darts of blind and rancid hate at you. Anyway, I have been reminded because of a little spark a previous post of mine caused, that it's so important not to stoop to the level of some of those out there who are motivated by rage and hatred. Hating someone simply for what they are (republican, democrat, christian, buddist, hindu, whatever) is nothing but cowardice, weakness and a true sign of self-loathing. Let's try to rise above such immaturity.

It's nice to have the calm confidence that comes from having the courage of one's convictions.

You can't win a battle with pure hate. It makes you look angry and silly.

On to better things...

Lovely day at the beach yesterday.

Beautiful words in my ear from the service this morning. Read the story of this precious hymn and then the lyrics. Even if you've heard it a million times. Then count your blessings.
- Words by Horatio G. Spafford, 1873
- Music by Philip P. Bliss, 1876

The words to this hymn was written after two major traumas in Spafford's life. The first was the Great Chicago Fire of October 1871, which ruined him financially. Shortly after, while crossing the Atlantic, all four of Spafford's daughters died in a collision with another ship. Spafford's wife Anna survived and sent him the now famous telegram: "SAVED ALONE." Several weeks later, as Spafford's own ship passed near the spot where his daughters died, he was inspired to write these words.


When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blessed assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Happy Sunday.

Friday, November 25, 2005

::princess poppet::

The anti-Christmas season has begun.

Don't incarcerate me because I'm beautiful.

Christians being persecuted in China and North Korea.

Does it get worse than this?

So it's time for a little sweetness:

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Monday, November 21, 2005

::giving thanks in the week of::

Luke had been referred, by his new pediatrician, to a Infant and Child Developmental Specialist. We had the appointment this morning. Have to admit, we were leary of going to yet another specialist who would likely ask 100 +1 questions about his missed milestones, only to tell us we need to be talking to him all the time (duh) and just be patient (impossible).

But T__ H_____, M.S., R.P.T. brought a bright and shiny glorious ray of hope. Firstly he doesn't believe Luke is autistic! What? Yep, he showed us a diagram of the brain and went through some quite complicated and detailed explainations about the cycles of information processing the brain goes through and what can happen if things go wrong. Eveything can be affected. He gave us reasons why Luke does the *funky* things he does. Never before have we been given the "whys". I sat mesmarized listening to him. He told us scenarios of hope and possibility for great progress. Yes, I realize there are quacks out there a plenty. Trust me, we've had to wade through a few. But sometimes you have a really good feeling about someone and can just tell. He has nothing to gain, no medications prescribed. But only what seemed to me as good solid answers.

We've a long way to go, no doubt, but there is hope. My world looks different today. It's a world where my lovely son may have a chance to live a bountiful, productive and wonderfully *typical* life.

"Hope" is the thing with feathers That perches in the soul And sings the tune without the words And never stops at all..." ~Emily Dickenson

::okay, I for one know what I don't want to be when I grow up::

Saturday, November 19, 2005

::rod fixed, hot, pop, bouncy, huggies, elvis, hugh, vital:::

  • Rob fixed the downed curtain rod holder thingie. Whataguy.
  • Stinkin hot what's the deal it's november 18 for pete's sake.
  • Heartfelt call from my dear pop. "Call me anytime Gina Pie. I'm your daddy and you can always unload on me". I love you Dad. Thank you.
  • Bouncy house on front lawn. Luke sweet and sweaty and hysterical.
  • Family visit to Costco. Huggies, Oil of Oily moisturizer, Play Piano keyboard, guitar, microphone and stool (for 39!! what a deal) Christmas gift, turkey and other misc.
  • Downloading some Elivis this evening from Limewire for CFMT (Carlin Family Music Time). Suspicious Minds for example.
  • Looking forward to a little House with Hugh Laurie this evening from Netflix. Love him. One of my fav actors. Gotta see him in Black Adder.
  • Glass of wine - debate about Old vs. New Testament with hubby. How can I convince him the Old is vital?

Friday, November 18, 2005

::christmas card photo shoot gone awry::






My blog readers are the greatest. Thank you for your votes on the previous post. Really helped so much.

Overcame my freeway shell-shock from a couple days back and ventured to A Child's View in Garden Grove in an attempt to secure a much-needed adjustment of Luke's glasses. He's also been sporting a nice size scratch on the left lens so I thought I'd be a good mama and assist my son in actually seeing. Nice of me.

This afternoon, after the park I decide to bung both kiddies in the duo stroller and do a little strolling. Hear a crunch, look down and I've just rolled over the glasses that Luke has just taken off his face. Scratched on the left lens. Yes, the glasses that we drove 40 minutes each way on the dreaded freeway to have adjusted only moments before. The very same.

I call my dear friend who lives in Ventura b/c I'm worried about her family being so close to the fires raging at the mo. She inpires me as she has completed her Christmas cards already.

"Time to take photos for Christmas cards" I declare to my bewildered children as we come home from the park. After Luke has pulled down the curtain rod that Rob affixed only days ago, the result of the photo session are above. May still use them. Luke and Leila in their real state of merriness and brightness.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

::should you choose to accept::

::say it loud::

Autistic and Proud
Long article but worth the read if you have anyone at all in or around your life who is on the autism spectrum.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

::stretched way too far across city lines, we are::

If ever needed, I know the perfect form of torture. IN the car, on the 55 in stand-still traffic at 4:30 pm with a bored toddler and hungry baby. It's also a great way to make an east coast girl long for home.

Where I grew up you lived in ONE city. If you didn't have it in your didn't have it. If the next city had an awesome mall or beach, it was a weekend trip. Here in OC, So. Cal. you live in about 6-7 different cities. Luke's doctors are in Orange, Fountain Valley and Long Beach. His speech therapist is in Huntington Beach. Rob works in Santa Ana. We go to church in Costa Mesa. It's like this for everyone. It's the lifestyle here. I loathe that part of it. It's unnatural. It doesn't help that I'm absolutely pathetic at directions. Give me mass transit anyday. Not the bus, mind you. Trains or something. Comfortable ones with lovely compartments for each family and someone who comes around to serve you snacks. But something nice, not peanuts. Ice cream or a low-carb power bar maybe.

Self-Portrait Tues.: Identity

Monday, November 14, 2005

:: we used to be the kind of people who swore we'd never let our kids toys take over our house. now we have kids::

Yes, this is our living room this evening.
Luke having a blast.
Being himself. Us letting him.

Small details:

We managed to eek out an additional 2.5 hours a week of funding. Conceding? Good move? Not sure.

Excited about entering a digital scrapbook contest. I'm just excited about participating.

Sitting here with a green mask on my face. Loving this little bit of pampering in my new blue room which I haven't posted photies of because we're trying to decide on a chair for the corner and I want to wait until it's completely done.

I've phone calls and emails aplenty to catch up on. Here I sit... bloggin.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

::new and old::

Short and sweet visit from old friends this weekend. Luke and Jet rekindled a best buddy bond. While the Mamas Gina and Clare shared sleepless day dramas. Reminded again how much I wish Clare was still only 20 minutes away.

Luke was invited to a Barney Birthday for his new friend Cole. Absolutely pure fun for Luke (bouncy house, balloon, food) Absolute joy for Rob and I because Kelly and Mike (Cole's parents) are an absolute delight and Kelly's mom and sister were amazing. Some of the kindest most understanding people we've met in a long time.

We went right out and bought a bouncy house for Luke this evening. I am more excited to see Luke in it than I imagine he will even be.

Rob read an article last night which, after he summarized for me helped me:
  • stop feeling sorry for Luke;
  • stop feeling sorry for ourselves;
  • focus on the great things he does and will do;
  • remember that many autistic children are genuises who may not necessarily know how to express themselves
  • let go, not worry, stop apologizing, stop "explaining" him
As a result I felt a release today which somehow allowed me, with Luke and Rob, to transcend perceived peer critique. Refreshing.

Friday, November 11, 2005


Thursday, November 10, 2005

::be you::

Golden hair. Golden skin. Golden boy. Go far. I know you will. We'll look back on these days of therapies, battling for hours, IEPs and just be happy they're gone. No need for them anymore. You may always be a little quirky but who's not? I'm determined to see you independent. Your soul is too beautiful not to be

Focusing again on getting up in the early morning to do my exercises. I had given up a bit since Luke started getting up at 6. How am I gonna beat that? Not even worth trying. So now that he seems to be sleeping till at least 7 and I'm desparate for exercise. You know, loose that blobby feeling.

I will see my dear friend Clare and her beautiful family tomorrow. They'll be staying for the weekend. I'm so excited. So what I need.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

::footie family::

Way back Wednesday - take it outdoors. 1997-8? My nutty lovable family for whom my heart aches from missin...

In order l to r: Uncle Dave, Brother Paul, Brother-in-law Paul (yep 2 Pauls and I have a sister-in-law Paula on Rob's side, I digress...back to the lineup) Sister-in-law Marcia, Mom kissing Dad, Sister Angie, Cousin Kelly. Me in blue shirt, Aunt Nancy in green, Cousin Jon whom you can't see, Cousin Aly, Cousin Kelly in front.

Wouldn't give anything for this memory. Unfortunately ending with minor ankle injury sustained by Uncle D.

Love and Hugs Family. Wish you would all come Thanksgive in Cali.

::eternal hope::

The line between day and night has become a blur.
Days go by so much more quickly than before I had children.
I'm reminded that this life is temporal.
Each moment we are closer to eternity. Each mess cleaned, each tantrum endured is one moment closer to seeing the face so beautiful it will make us cry.
Every trial and heartache brings us closer to paradise forever.
Eternity with our loved ones.
Heaven sounds amazing to me.
How can having no-pain be anything but amazing?
What a magnificent place it must be.
Forever bliss.
I must find the balance between not wishing away this colorful exciting life and anticipating our splendid forever.
I believe completely and rest in the promise of eternal hope and glory.
Without this joy of faith to share with my children, how dreadful and empty for me this life would be.

Monday, November 07, 2005

::see how lovely::

So much catching up to be done with scrapping the children's books. I'm a bit obsessed. I have a slightly obsessive personality so I tend to be that way with everything I do.

Luke's clinic tomorrow. We must figure out his sleeping schedule crisis. Maybe they can help.
I won't bore you with that again but dead on our feet.

We found out today that Luke's developmental doc didn't actually write the diagnosis anywhere in his file. Without it we will have a hard time getting services from the Regional Center. Can't even contemplate something so horrible. Scary, scary thought.

Good day for Luke - wanted a protein bar I was eating so he made a sound and pointed at my mouth. That's communication folks. Then as he was finally winding down tonight (after 13 hours of being awake) I laid beside him like I typically do and sang to him. He touched the back of his hand to my mouth (something he's done a few times before) but then we actually had a giggle together. He was actually looking into my eyes and giggling with me.

Leila is now touching her toes.

Angel girl and angel boy.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

::her story::

We rarely see the old woman who lives across the street from us. She emerged from her house today to do a little light gardening and I was suddenly curious about her story. What are her memories?

I thought about what it must be like to have grown children, to live alone and only have one's self to look after. Makes me wish I'd started a little earlier on having children. Would love to have tons of grandchildren to keep me busy. I'd want to live near them and my children of course. I think I'm okay with one day growing old because I know what comes after this life. I'm sure I'd read a lot. Maybe I'd have a scrapbooking club to go to on Thursday nights.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

::for the first time in my life, i wish i had taken woodshop in high school::

I put this hutch from IKEA together all by myself. Boy was I proud. My motivation was getting my computer up and running again. It worked. The front drawer doesn't close quite like it should and the tips of two screws are sticking out each of the sides but hey, my computer is up and running. And I love the hutch idea. Since the computer is in our bedroom I wanted to be able to hide it.

Made Beef Stroganoff for dinner Luke loved it. Reminds me of dinnertime when I was growing up. Nobody cooks like Mom.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

::babies don't keep::

"Cleaning and washing can wait till tomorrow. Babies grow up, I've learned to my sorrow. So quiet down cobwebs and dust go to sleep. I'm holding my baby and babies don't keep."

I'm anxious to learn some better photography techniques. Well, any techniques at all really seeing as how I point and shoot and that's about it. All my photos are completely doctored up in my "digital darkroom" ie: photoshop. So I took both the kiddies into B&N and picked up a photo techniques book. I can't wait to dig in this weekend.

I missed my extended family today more than usual. I would love to have my sister and brother's families right around the corner. I miss my sister-in-law who lives in England for Pete's sake. Jules if you're reading this...many {{{hugs}}}. I'm thinking of you now as Thanksgiving approaches; thinking of our time together last year.

I'll leave you with this photo of Rob when he was a younger cause he was/is a hottie:

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

::the garden and the mighty ocean::

Luke may never forgive that his mom made him an ocean costume out of felt. But adding the word MIGHTY helps a little. Leila was a garden. Happy Belated Halloween from my spooky little spookers.

::into the night::

We thought it was precious when Luke feel asleep at the dinner table at 6:30. It wasn't so precious when he woke up at 12:30 ready for a new day. What were we thinking to let him sleep? Might as well grap a photo op.

The Regional Center of Orange County denied Luke his additional MUCH NEEDED hours. Rob and I know we have a battle with the school district coming up. We would appreciate your prayers to soften the hearts of all those making decisions regarding Luke's education. It's all so very frightening.

::life is sweet up here::