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wife. mom. adjunct professor. we homeschool. i'm a little bit OCD. i love math. bright colors and geometric designs make me drool. we live with a medical rarity, and Jesus saved his life. through that, Jesus is changing us. The american dream and status quo is overrated...and sometimes just plain wrong. our lives, our family, our careers, our faith are all now filtered through a new lens-- thank you Jesus. welcome to our crazy. feel free to take some of it with you, we have plenty to go around.
It's not the load that breaks you down; it's the way you carry it.
-- Lena Horne


The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.-- Jesus Christ

Thursday, February 25, 2010

just blabbing

We're up and ready. It's 10 AM. The bed isn't made. Ridge had lower hbg than he usually does today. What's up with that? He was 10.7 which is still well above transfusion number for him...but it's still frustrating.  It's also frustrating that it's so hard to think: We've been without a transfusion and mostly been home the last six weeks, so this is no big deal.  Instead, it's easy to think: oh PLEASE don't let this mess start up again. Can we just be done with it?  That's a frustrating crossroads, bc while it is probably a human attitude, it is a somewhat ungrateful one.  That is where I am right now- praying to just be grateful for every moment and to continue to be changed in and by the grace of God, who has been more than good, more than merciful, to us.  But as a parent who has raised one, for the lack of a better word, "normal" child for three and a half years, I know what it SHOULD be like with Ridge right now. And it's frustrating. And I don't think anyone can fully understand that until they've walked it.  Because we ARE home, but it's NOT normal. "But it is what it is, and whatever it takes." (thank you, Scott Hamilton, for that quote in your interview in In Touch magazine....I told you, people, one of my vices is those types of magazines. But that was actually a neat interview...).  Little Ridge is so cute and we are so blessed to have him around and when he's not fussing to be held and spoiled even MORE, all he does is make us smile.  So, I'm a work in progress.  Who isn't?

I've been thinking a lot lately about diversity.  Of course when I think about the word itself, I always think of "diversity in the classroom" and other type trainings I've been through that have nothing to do with the reason I'm thinking of diversity right now! A teacher by trade, always.   Professional development that stuck (good job YPS and ERPS! :)). 

but no, I'm not thinking of a classroom.  I'm thinking of the people who surround me.  I have a diverse group of friends.  Young ones, older ones, even older wiser ones, all great ones.  I have friends who share some of my same neuroticisms, if that's even a word.  I have friends who don't share ANY of those neuroticisims.  I have messy friends, and clean friends, and rich friends, and poor friends, and working friends, and stay at home friends, and I have Protestant friends, Catholic friends, Jewish friends, and friends I don't maybe even know exactly what their religion is.  And my faith shapes who I am, as I am sure, their faith shapes who they are.  And I love that we can be different and still be friends.  Or be the same and still be friends- because sometimes that's even more difficult!  I am not wanting to get in a big debate here, so please don't read more into this post than is actually there.  All I'm saying is, regardless of our differences, or similarities, something allows a friendship to bust through.  And I love my friends. And I've made lots of new ones through this journey we're on right now. And I love them too!  We are so blessed.  And today, I just wanted to give a shout out to anyone who calls me "friend."  Some of you have proven more than your weight in salt for us through this trial.  Meals, visits, money, prayers, cards, calls, giving me business, etc. etc. etc.!!!  From all over this nation (and maybe even further!), we have some GREAT friends!  And no matter if you are one of my "same" friends or one of my way "different" friends-- you rock! Love you all.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

thought for myself today....might not like it....

warning/caution/whatever:  this post isn't entirely for the faint of heart or the virgin-eared. if you have some beef with Derek Webb or his music, I'd skip reading today's post.  i'm not saying i agree with everything that comprises derek webb's beliefs....or yours....so don't worry about me going there today.  some of the lyrics shared here might bother some of you. the playlist is set to where you have to hit play today, bc i don't want the song to just start if there are words you don't want to hear/your kids to hear...feel free to skip the blog until i get a new post up...bc this is what i'm sharing today. i apologize if i offend you- i'm just sharing my heart today and in no way do i want my choice of music/lyrics to be offensive, so i'm just warning you.  my intent is not to offend.  but sometimes, that happens anyway...so i won't apologize for being honest with myself and with you....but i do want you to have warning!

thanks to a different derek for reminding me of this song today.  i was reminiscent for a moment, enough so that i purchased the album for my itunes collection. 



so i'm sitting here....reading these lyrics...listening to this music....trying to decide what words to write and knowing that really if i said nothing, some of you would have already taken enough from just that to be moved in some way today- good or bad, i don't know.  but i'm going to share my reflections...and you may or may not take any insight from it, and that's fine too.  this is gonna be a long one, so brace yourself.
 
Wedding Dress
derek webb


If you could love me as a wife
And for my wedding gift, your life
Should that be all I’d ever need?
Or is there more I’m looking for

And should I read between the lines
And look for blessings in disguise
To make me handsome, rich, and wise
Is that really what you want?

[Chorus]
‘Cause I am a whore I do confess
But I put you on just like a wedding dress
And I run down the aisle, I run down the aisle
I’m a prodigal with no way home
But I put you on just like a ring of gold
And I run down the aisle
I run down the aisle to you


So could you love this bastard child?
Though I don’t trust you to provide
With one hand in a pot of gold
And with the other in your side
‘Cause I am so easily satisfied
By the call of lovers so less wild
That I would take a little cash
Over your very flesh and blood

[Chorus x2]
Because money cannot buy
A husband’s jealous eye
When you have knowingly deceived his wife

[Chorus x2]



Last night, I was driving home from running a few errands.  I was thinking about everything we've been going through the last almost year....I couldn't word my thoughts correctly...but...yeah, this kinda sums it up. yeah.  

i mean, has my faith been taken, destroyed, ripped to shreds through all of this? no way. my faith is still there.  i don't doubt God's providing. I don't doubt  God knows what was and is coming.  I don't doubt his ability.  My faith, be it ever so small sometimes, is there.  It's THERE.  But is it always active?Does it always impact the decisions and actions our family makes? the decisions I make- let's leave it at that.  Let's just talk about me and leave everyone else out for now.  Because really, that's what we all need to do sometimes, look at what the heck is up with US.  This post doesn't just deal with our/my MY struggles since Ridge was diagnosed with this nightmare.  Because the truth is, if i didn't struggle with hypocrisy before, this song never would have been written.  because all of us who follow Christ have issues like this.  again, if we didn't, this song never would have been written.

Is it not enough that I've been redeemed by blood? by a life?  is that not enough?  why do I (and anyone else for that matter) expect any more?  I don't have a some RIGHT to expect financial provision, health, good fortune, whatever.  YES, my God will provide all [my] needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (I'm sure that's paraphrased).  But what if he didn't?  should it matter?  I have been bought with a price. And that's great that I can just claim my faith with convenience. Good job.  "run down the aisle" and then flit away.  To whatever- whatever the world can offer.  Does that mean money is bad? Does that mean ANYTHING we desire is bad? no. well maybe some things are bad.  But I believe we are given passions and deep desires to do certain things and i think those desires, if not blatantly out of line with scripture, are from the Lord.  At this point, someone is thinking "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart."  right.  i mean it- right.  But that verse is often misunderstood I think.  if we are delighting ourselves in the Lord, we will be given all these things we desire?  yeah, i don't think that's what is meant.  i think it means if we are truly DELIGHTING ourselves in the Lord, he will give us the DESIRES of our heart- the desires themselves will be given by the Lord.  here's what i'm saying.  i have things i want/desire.  so...if i just begin delighting myself in the Lord, he will give me those things?  no.  no no no.  maybe sometimes, but that's not what i think that verse means.  if i begin delighting myself in the Lord, those things I want/desire may totally go by the wayside and i may forget all about them, bc he will actually GIVE me the true desires of my heart- desires i didn't even know were there.  

i can't tell you what else i'm chasing after, because i don't even know what it is. God's been good to me to give me time at home, to give me a passion for creating things, to bless that and to give me a peace that if nothing comes of it, that's fine.  I just enjoy my time at home and my time creating things and that's all it is- something I enjoy and can hopefully glean some success from.  I enjoy writing this blog but I won't ever be famous from it, and that's fine by me. I hope to go back to work in a year or two but I don't know if I will get to, and I have a peace about that.  But I'm not skipping around hand in hand with my savior all day long either.  I have peace about some things, I have a lack of peace about others.  So while I don't know what I'm chasing after, I am fully aware that I'm flitting around.  Because, really, it must be so difficult for us to just swallow ourselves and say, whatever befalls us, YOU are all we need.  Like Job 1:21  "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised."

So know this.  I have faith in my God.  he will see me through and he wont' change even if  my faith falters.  I am in his hand and I can not be removed.  But I am soooo not perfect.  And things WAY less satisfying than our Lord are settled for  in my life.  Often, my faith is weak at best and is shaky and I live just like everyone else.  "everyone else"....but we are better than that.  We are children of the King. No, scratch that, we are not any better than that.  There is none not righteous, no not one.  We're all dirty sinners.  But many of us have cast that sin to Jesus and let him take it.  So let him take it.  I'm talking to me as much as I'm talking to you. Whatever satisfies you, or seems to satisfy you...whatever you are setting for....it is not okay for me to be deceived by the things of this world.  It's not.

The things that plague us and are important to us in a moment- like a job, a purchase, a relationship that for some random reason has gone awry, health- yours or someone else's, a marriage in limbo, a struggle to conceive, whatever it is- lay it down. some of those things are plaguing my own life right now...the consumption i am giving them is ridiculous. the energy and effort i afford to them makes them, often, my Lord.  we have something so much greater to satisfy us. 

I apologize for the ramblings.  If you are still with me, I have to close with this.  If this post has done nothing for you but take up lots of minutes of your day, I'm sorry-- but it has been therapeutic for me.  So I close with part of Hebrews 12.  Emphasis added, by me.

 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
 4In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons:
   "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline,
      and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
 6because the Lord disciplines those he loves,
      and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son."[a]
 7Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? 8If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. 9Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! 10Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. 11No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
 12Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. 13"Make level paths for your feet,"[b] so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.


In no way do I think Ridge's disease is a punishment from God.  But I do think this hardship, and others we are facing *some of which are probably discipline from God*, is a way to test our faith.  It is a way to be taken through the fire and emerge more whole than before. 

It's a beautiful day here today.  A beautiful day...to run down the aisle and run and run and run in sweet fellowship with the King.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Not Me! Monday-- three hilarious surprises.

can i please start off saying that i am NOT having to retype this bc blogger had some failure with my posting it? so disappointed bc it probably won't be as funny the second time around.





 



before i begin, if you missed my last post with the video of Ridge getting his blood checked and his octreotide changed, you can find it here-- i'd been promising it, so i want to make sure you see it if you want to.

Okay, so there are some seriously funny things that did NOT happen around here this last week.  But first, credit to MckMama for starting the tradition of Not Me!'s....if you want to read some more, head on over here. (REVISION: mucho apologies for a non working link! how annoying! i don't know what the deal was, but NOW the link works).

All right.

The first thing I have to share is how last night, after working fast and furious on some of these:

i did NOT decide, at like 11:00 when my baby was NOT awake and NOT just jibberjabbering away, that I wanted to sneak some girl scout tagalongs as a little bedtime snack.  when i was NOT doing this, i did NOT find that someone had already, earlier, beaten me to the snacking. this was not made obvious by the evidence seen here:



in case you aren't seeing what kept me laughing for several minutes last night, that sock monkey doesn't usually reside in our pantry. though he is still in that same spot.  the tagalongs, however, are not.  i'm not saying where SOME of them went.

The same person who did NOT leave that sock monkey in our pantry also did NOT try to be a helper by super sanitizing/power cleaning/hotter-than-bon-jovi heat dry the dishes in the dishwasher (by NOT pushing ALL the buttons)....and upon NOT doing any of that that same three year old someone did NOT invent this by accident:



the baby spork. 

won't be washing THOSE spoons in the dishwasher again.  bdawg was quick to point out the pink spoons escaped unscathed.  while the only blue one....well, it's no good.

and finally, the last thing i did NOT do just this morning...warning: if you are uncomfortable with the topic of breastfeeding, the rest of this post is sooooo not for you.  don't say i didn't warn you!


this morning, as i got ready in my cute new blue flats....and my cute little mustard colored cardigan, and my cute necklace i got last year for my birthday....i did NOT forget anything. i was (seriously) ready on time for our first consult with the hematologist.  and with all my togetherness, i totally would neverrrrrrrrrr forget something.  and if, on the off chance i did, i would realize so when leaving my driveway, NOT upon arrival to the parking garage of the hospital.  and because i have breastfed one baby for a year and this baby for almost a year, i would never ever ever have the item i forgot be.....
breastpads.

maybe some of you don't need them. i do.  maybe you don't know what they are- suffice it to say, leaks happen.

and i would ALWAYS be so prepared that i would have backup breastpads in the car....so that if i were to look in the breastpump bag emergency bag or the diaper bag or the console or the glove box or the pockets on the seats, i would NOT have come up empty handed.  at which point, i would not have decided to just pump a bottle while still in the car to avoid the risk of leakage for the entire hospital to see...and while doing so, i would not have (seriously at this point) worried about anyone in the parking garage or walkway in front of it seeing me, and i definitely would NOT have used a diaper as a breastpad during all this process.  upon feeling rushed and not being very successful with any of the above, i had a eureka moment.  at this point, i asked bdawg to go get two of THESE from the back of the car....and then, i did NOT use the two of THESE as breastpads.

yes. lavender scented. yesssss.  i'm really, for reals, NOT kidding. i'm not.


and i'm also not kidding when i say...

they worked.


hope you had a laugh on me.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

painstaking!

ha ha ha....FINALLY i have some video to upload.  but it has taken FOREVER to get it ready!  yesterday, I made a conscious effort to have b-dawg help me video checking ridge's hemoglobin and changing his meds.  last night, i went to plug the camcorder into the computer, only to find out we didn't know where the usb cable was bc we have never done that with our camcorder!  so bdawg found it.  i hooked it all up....but our camcorder, while only a few years old, is old enough that not everyone was wanting a MAC back then, and the software to upload the video is only compatible with windows.  we don't have windows anything on our MAC!  thankfully, our laptop is a sony, as is the camcorder, so we were in luck. i thought.  so i got it all hooked up.  put the cd in to install the viewing program.  apparently, it was already on our computer, so that was a 10 minute waste of time. i got it all hooked up and began importing the video clips.  estimated wait time: about an hour. WHAT?  so i left to go to hobby lobby to buy some more yarn and jewelry findings to make more of these and these and these:
speaking of THAT, i wish i had a picture on the laptop of the newest turquoise endeavor- it's the hugest necklace you've ever seen! or i've ever seen, at least.
and speaking of all of that, maybe you know someone/someplace, maybe you even own someplace, that might want to sell any of this stuff?  if so, email me and i'd love to get an order ready for you!  seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com or you can become a fan of seesaw ridge productions on facebook and let me know there what you need.

okay, moving on. so i get back from hobby lobby all excited for my videos to be uploaded.  but the camcorder had shut down- battery died.  GREAT.  so i start over, and this time, it's going NOWHERE.  so i just give up, wake up this morning and start on it straight away.  while it's working it's magic, i look through my media files, and there, in all of their glory, sit TWO copies of every video except one.  WHAT?  that's ridiculous. so without further ado (well a little ado bc i'm going to actually pause right now and go enjoy some yummy breakfast burritos bdawg's been cookin' in the kitchen...)

well...that was good breakfast, but getting this video to cooperate is proving to be impossible. i've been working an hour without any luck.

i think...maybe....it's working. or not. OH MY GOSH.  This has taken seriously since about 5 pm yesterday.  It's 11 AM today. I'm about to have a meltdown.  haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaallelujah!!!  got it!

i apologize ahead of time for a few things: 1) my zebra pajamas. 2) sawyer's even worse pajamas. 3) that my hand is blocking the view in some of the video.
make sure to pause the playlist in the bottom right of the blog screen so that you can hear the video and not the regular playlist/music.




hope it's not too "educational" (i.e....boring)


Friday, February 19, 2010

quick update

So here's what's going on- my house is a cluttered mess of jewelry, toys, yarn, blah blah blah so i'm going to go clean it up.

BUT, I wanted to show you a couple of my newest endeavors and leave you with my most recent soap box -- it's short, and not really that annoying of a trait--

I've been making these:

for babies/kids....


and for non babies/kids...

 

and....i am going to have 5-10 pieces of my jewelry in an Albuquerque NM fashion show...so I've started working on some of that....here is my first piece:

 


I just wanted to show that stuff off to you! :)
Here's a post to keep you occupied while I clean my nasty house.

Tuesday’s soapbox

I missed out on doing this AGAIN this week.  Here’s my thought for this “tuesday”- whenever this is actually published.  And I am learning to try to be more understanding and realize things are relative to people’s circumstances, so what I say here may not be true for everyone.  I get that. 

I think it is so odd today (in this era/time of life/whatever) that people don’t WAIT for things.  People want what their parents or grandparents worked for YEARS to get/achieve/whatever.

Like rushing to get married (I, too, was a young bride, so I’m guilty here-- and I love B-Dawg with all my heart, I’m just sayin, what’s the rush?)
Rushing to have a baby.

*disclaimer: I personally know SEVERAL people who waited longer to get married and waited a good while to have a baby...perhaps even started with a puppy instead of a baby...so this is totally not true for everyone*

and there’s this...rushing...like right after marriage, to buy this super nice house/apt/car/whatever.  maybe if they waited to marry, or if they had some great inheritance or were already a very successful businessperson, then they have plenty of money to do this- that’s NOT what I’m talkin about.  I’m talking about the people who don’t wait to get married, who don’t wait till they have steady jobs, who just say “I want this” and they get it/buy it/ do it/whatever.  And then they are working their tails off the rest of their lives to pay for it.  Debt is nasty.  That’s what I think.  NAS-TAY.  I love Dave Ramsey, btw.  budget? love it.  paying cash for things? love it. debt snowballs? love those too.  i hate debt.  our finances are quite out of whack with all of this with Ridge but, truthfully, BEFORE all of this happened, we had our little cash envelope system, our little budgets, our debt all paid off except our house.  MAN....I’m not kidding, one of the hugest things we ever fought about was completely OUT THE WINDOW.  I just think...wait.  Get the good stuff when you are settled into your life and you really know how much money you can function with/without.

We clearly live in the instant gratification age....and an age where people want to look like what the perceive to be status quo....but we live in an age of economic crises as well....and looks can reaaaaally be deceiving. 


so that was a short soapbox.  but i don’t need a very tall one to stand on since i’m...ya know... 6’0” according to the giraffe chart at the hospital.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

check THIS out.

want to see how the rhubarb pie actually turned out?
want to see how Sawyer let me know I didn't pay enough attention to him?
want to see if Ridge likes his babyfood?
want to see one thing that I'm pumped about?

then check THIS out.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

more about MLT, and Ridge

MLT info, more...and a day in our life, again.

Okay a few things about MLT I forgot:

in case you don’t keep up with the blog regularly...MLT is rare.  That’s why IF you’ve tried to research it, unless you knew the LONG name for it, you probably found nada.  I’m not talkin rare disease like 1in 200,000 people have it...i’m talking RAAAAARE, as in, I think there are like 30-35 diagnosed cases in the entire WORLD.  ridiculously rare.  it is NOT a result of anything I did or didn’t do in pregnancy, not that you were thinking that, but that question has been asked several times.  It is not hereditary- so if (when) we have another baby, the odds of he/she also having MLT are like...zero.  Of course, the odds of Ridge having it were almost zero also...but you really think we’ll have TWO kids with it?  doubt it. 

the main danger in MLT is the severe GI bleeds.  They could obviously lead to death.  These bleeds are MORE dangerous in infancy, bc an infant has a smaller body and less blood to lose, so when they DO lose it, the effects of that blood loss are seen rapidly.  Ridge would get an incredibly high heart rate and be crying this super weird cry bc he couldn’t get enough air...he’d be getting “shocky”...he’d rush a pale color...once he couldn’t stay awake and I heard the nurse tell a doctor that he was coding.  I don’t want to think about that.  That hasn’t happened in a loooong time.  well, four or five months.  that’s a long time considering he’s only ten months old.

Ridge has responded to steroid treatment, and most of the time that is not effective in MLT cases.  However, this has come at a price.  steroids stunt growth, so does the octreotide he is on....steroids cause him to retain fluids which is why his cheeks are so ...deliciously fat.  steroids also, the longer used, weaken the immune system.  this is dangerous because Ridge can’t take a prophylactic (preventative) antibiotic, at least not orally, bc it makes him begin bleeding.  so his immune system is “functionally” low.  which means we avoid getting out if possible.  which means few visitors, and when people do visit, obviously we prefer hands to be sanitized or washed.  because our bodies produce steroids of their own, as we wean ridge’s steroids, we must do so slowly so that his body can “make up” the “difference.”  if we are giving him 1.4 MLs of steroids and we cut that to 1.2, we have to give his body time to make up that .2 MLs before we reduce more.  The longer he is on the steroids, the more likely a severe reaction to the reduction is to occur.  Severe reaction would be marked by vomitting and/or fever.  ANY time Ridge has a fever, regardless of the steroids, we don’t give him meds and watch him.  we take him immediately to the hospital bc it could be a central line infection (the line in his chest).  Thankfully, this has not happened yet (no fever, ever).  If he did have a fever, by the way, he could only take tylenol.  If you are a parent, you know Motrin, or alternating Tylenol and motrin, works best.  motrin is ibuprofen.  This can cause the stomach lining to bleed.  We have enough bleeding issues.  So we can’t give motrin.  Because he still breastfeeds, I can not take motrin for headaches or any other aches.  Not that that is a huge deal, I have a friend who is having to learn to avoid MANY food items for her daughter’s sake while she breastfeeds, so I am most definitely not complaining.  I am simply explaining things you may not be aware of.  Anyway, fevers or vomitting can be trademark signs of the steroid wean not going well.  At that point, we’d up his steroid, and then we would have to take him to the hospital to make sure it wasn’t a line infection.  For this reason, ANYONE who has a fever or has been exposed to a fever, OR vomitting, can not be around Ridge.  It is just too risky.  A hospitalization is just not what we want.  Any other illness, even a cold, he would be more likely to catch than a regular child bc of his definitely weakened immune system.  So going to the grocery store isn’t as easy as it used to be- we can’t really go as a family....bc we can’t take Ridge.  We went to church our first weekend home, and it was so wonderful.  But we can’t take Ridge and feel comfortable about it anymore, not until the steroid wean is more successful.  I am hoping and praying the wean has reached a successful place by the time we celebrate Ridge’s birthday.  Because i want friends and family to be able to be here and Ridge to be able to safely celebrate! 

Our day goes a little like this:

Brandon and Sawyer leave for work/school by 7:30ish.
Ridge and I sleep until about 8:30 or 9 AM (we aren’t lazy, keep reading)
Ridge gets his diaper changed and his blood checked (video or something of this soon-- the blood part, not the diaper part).
Ridge takes his meds around 9:15
I email the clinic to tell them what his hemoglobin was for the day
I give Ridge another med around 9:45 or 10
He has to wait until about 10:30 to eat anything bc of the meds. 
He usually plays or is held and then naps around 11 or 12 for about an hour.
*Ridge is crawling and pulling up now.  Dangerous bc he has 3 feet of cord and that’s it.  So I gotta watch him closely and follow him moreso than with Sawyer or a “normal” baby...bc if he pulls the cord, he pulls the line in his chest, which could be mucho-bad-o.*
At 3 pm he takes one other med.
at 4 pm I change his octreotide (IV med- video of that someday soon, too).
He usually naps again sometime between 2 PM and 5 PM, for about an hour or so.
Once a week, he gets his dressing changed on his central line and he gets a lab drawn at that time also.
He plays or naps or eats sometime between 5 and 9 pm, which is when he gets meds again (about the same amt as 9 AM meds)
He gets the same med around 930 or 945 PM that he got at that time AM.
He stands and splashes my bath water as I take a bath most nights.  Ridge only gets sponge baths bc of his central line; he can’t be “submerged” in water.  Like a toaster.  Yeah, like that.
He eats around 10:30 and sometimes falls asleep.  Sometimes he squeals with delight and pinches his daddy’s face until close to midnight. 
Sometimes he makes daddy sleep in the recliner with him all night.
Other nights he wants to nurse the entire night while he’s sleeping. 
Which means I’m not sleeping.
That’s why I sleep until 8:30 or 9AM.
Then we start all over.

I hope that explained even more than I have previously! And I hope it wasn’t boring!

Monday, February 15, 2010

MLWHAT?

So Ridge has MLT.  Multifocal Lymphangioendotheliomatosis with thrombocytopenia.  Yes. I spelled it right.

WHAT is it?  I don't know if I've gone into what Ridge has on the blog or not, but some dear students stopped by to drop off these the other day for the boys:
 
 and one of the students mentioned they knew Ridge HAD MLT but they didn't really know WHAT MLT was/is.  So here's my totally NON expert lesson on MLT.
MLT 101, so to speak.

Okay, so most every kid who has MLT has lesions on the skin that look like hemangiomas (you know, the red birthmarks lots of kids are born with that usually go away with age).  The way these types of "lesions" come about is because these kids have blood vessels that run too close to the surface of the skin.  I'm not sure why that makes a hemangioma/lesion/whatever.  ANYWAY, with MLT, not only do the blood vessels run too close to the surface of the skin, causing skin lesions that look sometimes like freckles, sometimes like hemangiomas, (Ridge has zero skin lesions, save for the possibility of MAYBE one on his eyelid but it is only there sometimes), but the blood vessels in their GI tract ALSO run too close to the surface.  This causes similar lesions within the GI tract/stomach.  These lesions proliferate, or multiply.  They are the entire thickness of the wall of the stomach/intestine/etc. often.  They bleed.  Platelets, which normally stop bleeding, become trapped in the blood vessels, bc the disease is a platelet trapping disease.  As the platelets become trapped in the blood vessels, the vessels grow, causing the lesions to bleed worse.  This is why Ridge almost never gets platelet transfusions, even if his platelets are low.  Normal platelets are 150K.  Ridge doesn't get platelets unless he is below 10K.  Many MLT kids have platelets in the 30K range, normally.  Ridge was at 36K in July when we were admitted to the hospital.  He has settled in from around 70K-100K, but that is a result, we think, of the steroids he is on.  So we are watching as we cut his steroids, to see where he settles. I figure it will be in the 30 or 40K range.  Maybe better.  This low platelet part of the disease could inhibit him later in life-- contact sports will probably not be where he excels, bc our doctors don't think he will be playing any contact sports.  If he always has low platelets, head injuries will be of extreme concern-- even moreso than with a "normal" child.  I am just repeating doctor info, so any of this could change, maybe it already has.  This is a disease that has no cure, and there is debate whether medicine even helps at all. I think it does, but I guess there is no way to know FOR SURE.  Data supports that children outgrow the worst part of the disease by age 1, but I know that is not true for every child with MLT.  I can only pray it is true for mine.  By age 3 or 4, it is believed that, while the lesions will still be present, the bleeding will no longer be there, the meds won't be needed (if they are even still needed up to that point), and transfusions won't be necessary.  However, this isn't ALWAYS true.  There is no set in stone with the disease.  That is why fiddling with meds is so scary to me.  He's doing so well right now, so changing things is necessary,  but scary.  A lot of times, MLT kids need parts of their stomach or intestines or whatever removed to help control the bleeding-- wherever the most lesions are, that area is removed.  Ridge has not needed that yet.  Hopefully he won't, but I don't know what is in our future.  I hope no more of this.  But I don't know that.  

I have so many things i haven't typed but between the three men in my living room, it has been nearly impossible to type this! :)  So if you have any questions, leave me a comment.  Or email me at seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com

Soon I will post photos and/or video of checking Ridge's blood and of changing his medication daily (his IV med).

Have a good evening!

winner!!!

Okay three correct guesses, well two and a half...but the first correct answerer was
 
Sue Nan McGraw

That pie was, indeed, a RHUBARB pie.  I first tasted rhubarb pie when I was in Canada on a mission trip three weeks before my wedding.  mmmm...it was homegrown rhubarb and i have not perfected my pie to be as good as that pie was.  But it is officially one of mine and B-Dawg's favorites.  I've had some nasty rhubarb pies (even at restaurants famous for pie....), but mine is good. Promise.  And way super easy.  Especially if you cheat and use the store bought crust, which i did.  Of course, it isn't NEAR as good that way.  Here's why i LOVE rhubarb pie-- like our Aunt Dana's super awesome cherry pie (which my MIL can reproduce very well as well!)-- it is sweet AND tart.  When I say super awesome cherry pie by the way- this is no cherry pie with cherry pie filling peeps....this is a GOOD super awesome cherry pie.  None compares.  But my rhubarb pie has the same quality- sweet and tart. 

So anyway, Sue Nan McGraw-- good job.  If you will email me at seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com and let me know if you want a free pair of earrings or if you want a necklace on my website momforsales.etsy.com at 15% off, I will get you taken care of! You can let me know what color of earrings you'd like, or if you just want me to pick, OR you can let me know which necklace you like and we will get all the details worked out via email (don't order from the website, bc I'm not good enough yet to figure out how to apply a discount for you that way!)  CONGRATS! 

Hope everyone had a great weekend. 

Ridger is doing awesome with the second wean on the steroids.  Keep those prayers a-coming!

and a shout out to faithful reader Grandma Duck, who got MARRIED yesterday on valentine's day!  Congrats!!!  We love you!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

valentine's day! plus a prize!

 

so for valentine's day....we are hanging out at home, about to watch a movie.  last night we watched a movie...started it too late, and ridge and i couldn't stay awake.

 

before we started watching a movie last night, i got today's lunch in the crock pot....

roast beef....with potatoes and carrots.  the...THE meal my mom made seemingly every sunday (i know mom, it wasn't every sunday)....THE meal i hated.  THE meal i said i would NEVER make (and rarely do)...but today, that's what we will have.  and it turned out wonderfully; the roast is falling apart- the only way i like it....and the potatoes and carrots are done but not TOOOOOO overdone.  of course, in the picture, everything is still totally raw.

i also made dessert....
 

and my question for you....for those of you who have NOT already been revealed the answer....is ....what kind of pie is this (if you've been told the answer by myself or b-dawg...please don't tell the answer to those around you!!!)?  if you want to play along, comment with your answer or send it to seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com....the first person to guess correctly....wins either a free pair of earrings OR 15% off a necklace on my website. 

happy valentine's day to you!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

team ridge

mucho thanks to yukon deca and the HS and all the schools and the community and facebook and whatever etc etc i need to thank.  deca is selling these super cute "team ridge" shirts to offset some of our medical costs- which is great- i think the shirts alone are great- how much camaraderie i think it shows of our community.  i am not "plugging" this so that you will buy one.  i know you guys who read this support us in whatever way you can, and you know, i hope, how grateful we are.  i am "plugging" this because if you want a Team Ridge shirt, the deadline is Monday to order them.  if none of the funds went to us, I'd still plug this, because the shirt alone shows great support for rallying behind Ridge and shows the faith that we all have to want him better and completely whole again.  some students have created a facebook page called Team Ridge.  There you can find out more about this, if you don't already know about it.  if you don't have a facebook, you can probably contact yukon HS (oklahoma) to find out more about how to get one of these shirts....just wanted to let our readers know! 

Many many thanks to our school and our community.  love you guys!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

ridger updates

typing with a baby on my lap....makes for some interesting typos, and i doubt if i correct every sinle one of tem.  like single and them...see...i just can't keep up.  so please read anyway...

updates on Ridge..
....SIX teeth.  yep.
....eating OATMEAL cereal and still breastfeeding....friday we can add something new.
....tomorrow will be a MONTH without blood transfusions....
....weaning the steroids every friday.  a little set back this first wean, but he caught up and is still having superb hemoglobin levels...12.8 today, to be precise!
....can pull up and walk alongside things. doesn't do it a lot, but can.
....can't crawl really...scooting yes, backwards crawling, some, but regular crawling, not really
....sleeps with mommy and daddy and is the greatest snuggler around.
...babbles but says no words yet.  or no understandable words.
...has the sweetest smile around.
....seems to be over the RSV and doing well in that respect.  still low immune system due to the steroids, but hopefully the wean will continue to go well.  he will start pentamidine through his central line in a few weeks. this is a monthly antibiotic treatment to ward off a type of pneumonia immune-suppressed kids can get.
...right now is set up for regular checkups only once a month instead of every other week as before. 
....is two months and 13 days from being a year old.  here's to believing the worst is behind us.  oh i certainly hope that is true.

updates on sawyer...
...great big brother.
...very obedient, except when he's...not.  but usually, you ask him to do something and the response is, "okay mommy. whatever you say."
...likes to play, esp. when people come over- then he likes to get out every.single.toy.  and that, my friends, is annoying.
...will be FOUR, four months from yesterday. weird.


updates on the adults in this house....i think there are some of those around....

....i can't stop reading Cormac McCarthy's "The Road." 
...i am about ready to take a jewelry hiatus and knit like crazy...then take a knitting hiatus and jewelry make like crazy. 
...i started an etsy store- i don't mean to sound repetitive to those regular blog readers...but some of you don't stop by every day or every other day, so anyway...momforsales.etsy.com is my website.  there you will find what jewelry i currently have ready to sell.  you can even order it there and pay by paypal.  if you dont' have a paypal acct, it's easy to do and the safest way to buy things online.  and it's free to have a paypal acct.  if you have questions about it, email me at seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com
....i am thoroughly enjoying this season of LOST...as well as the bachelor...and i can not believe, respectively (is that the right word, for like, "in order"?)--1) that claire is bad. and 2) that ali is gone...of her own choosing. she isn't my favorite, tenley is, but i still was shocked.  
...brandon got home last night from his papa's funeral. he said the service was good. i wish i could have attended.  brandon went back to work today.
...brandon is thinking about a litter of brittany pups in a few weeks or months (i don't know when it will be "time.")-- any takers?  my email is above.  yes, they will cost money.  and yes, they will be good hunting dogs. they will be fun dogs, period, but considering the last bunch of brittanies we had mainly went to truck drivers (i don't know!)-- maybe some hunters might like to get some of these. are dogs are AKC registered and come from great blood lines.my email is listed above. let me know!
...i think that's it.  i don't know if it is, but i want to go read my book! :)
...i realized at 11 pm last night i forgot to write my soapbox for tuesday. i know, you're sorely disappointed.  sure.  don't worry, i've got a few in storage that i will write soon.

have a great day!

Monday, February 8, 2010

the rotting booger finger

 

So it's Not Me! Monday.  Haven't done one of these in forever.  I don't really have a lot to say, but I do have a story, and those of you who aren't my facebook friend don't probably know it, unless I personally told it to you.  So it most definitely was NOT me who had the following conversation with Sawyer:

cut the lights, cue the movie on TV, scene opens with a mom snuggled up on the living room floor with her toddler son.
Mom is watching movie, son is picking his nose.

"Sawyer, STOP picking your nose."
I wasn't picking my nose. I had a booger.
"well STOP picking.  If you keep picking your nose, your finger will rot off.  That means it will fall off."
boy's eyes grow wide with newfound knowledge....and fear.
Ooookay, Mommy.

mother goes back to watching movie.  a few minutes pass.
....mommy?
mother looks at son, who has wide as saucer eyes.....
"yes, sawyer?"
son continues staring, with a worried look about him.
my finger huwts....

"did you pick your nose again, sawyer?"
son nods, still obviously worried.
"well....the only way to fix it is....to rub your finger on your tummy till it stops hurting."
son vigorously rubs his finger on his belly.
"is it getting better?"
son nods.  
scene goes black.  


scene reopens 24 hours later in  hospital room; lights are bright.  baby in crib, toddler son playing in room, mother in rocking chair.


mommy?  my finger is hurting again.
"did you pick your nose?"
son nods.
"well, how did i tell you to fix it last night? what did you do?"
i rubbed it on my tummy....pause. pause. pause. and then,


i rubbed it on your pillow.



you're welcome, world.

 the craziness that is Not Me! Monday was started by MckMama.  you can read her blog here.
 
 

Sunday, February 7, 2010

pics

hop on over here today if you are looking to kill some time.  i uploaded some pictures of our recent happenings.

Friday, February 5, 2010

it's raining.

It's not really. not literally i mean.  But it is....it is just pouring around here.  I wish I could write out a list of the blows I feel are pounding us right now.  Some of it I can't share yet, and some of it I can, and some of it is old stuff that just isn't old, bc it may have had "time" but it will never be old.  Of course, everything with Ridge is always heavy on us.  Even when he's doing well.  Every day I beg with fear I shouldnt' have that God would let Ridge be healed, that today would be a good day, that we could avoid the hospital.  A lot of days I am discouraged because I don't like to get Ridge out a lot because of his weakened immune system, so I don't get to get out a lot....unless I'm by myself, which is great sometimes, but other times, it's just lonely.  I'd be lying if I said the entire ordeal hasn't had some effect on our household and the way our family functions.  So all of this is always there.  Coupled with the loss of Brandon's dad a little over two years ago....and if you've lost someone close to you, especially a parent, or sibling, or child I'm sure...that just doesn't go away. Brad wasn't my dad, but he was another, a second dad to me.  And I miss him every day.  I know it has to be that much more wrenching to those who were truly, are truly, his.  I am thankful to have both of my parents still living.  But I have experienced loss- loss of my dad's dad when I was in college, to the debilitating alzheimer's....loss of my mom's mom to a stroke that caused her to also not be herself.  Never knowing my mom's dad, but always imagining we'd be great friends.  Loss of Brandon's mom's dad early in my relationship to Brandon.  Loss of Brandon's dad.  And tonight....the loss of Brandon's dad's dad.  I don't know that I could say it totally came out of the blue, because he'd been having issues with the stints he'd had placed.  But it was kind of a shock.  I knew it as soon as I saw Brandon answer the phone....but it was just really not expected in our household tonight.  This is sad, this is stressful, in ANY time, ANY event.  It is that much moreso in our household with an "on eggshells" situation-- working out a way to get Brandon there, and get me some back up help here...praying the weather isn't HORRENDOUS if we were to have to go to the hospital....I'm so sick of the worry and fear and concern that plagues me...I know it isn't supposed to, so you don't have to tell me that. I'm just sort of blabbing aimlessly here.  But tonight, we lost someone...not truly lost, because we know where he is....tonight he embraces three children who went on to be with Jesus before he did...tonight he embraces our Savior himself....But as you know, with death, while we can rejoice, we are still saddened.  Papa was one of my favorite people in the world.  He still is.  Brad was another one of my favorite people in the world. He still is.  Both of them never hesitated to get on the floor to play with Sawyer, and Pa pa, even three years later when Ridge came along, didn't hesitate to get on the floor and crawl around with him and Sawyer.  The man was incredible.  Still is.  There was no awkward transition into his house for someone who didn't grow up eating lunch there every school day. :)  He and nanny became my grandparents.  I don't mean there was an awkward transition anywhere else, I'm just focusing here on Nanny and PaPa for tonight.  He reminded me a lot of my papaw, the grandfather who died when I was in college.  He always asked how my school year was going, how my students were....he got nanny a laptop to use when she had surgery...but he became email savvy and read the blog regularly...did research on the internet.....even SKYPED!!! ha ha ha....we always joked about how we'd see him on facebook one day.  oh i love that man.  so anyway, hearts are heavy tonight.  That isn't all that's going on in our family of four and our extended family, but that is all I can share right now.  Tonight it is quiet in my house and the air is thick.  I keep breathing a prayer ... "even so, come Lord, Jesus, come...." oh how I just want all the junk to just be over.  i know it's part of life.  but that doesnt' mean i like it.  it doesn't mean i will always smile about it.  i miss pa pa.  i miss brad.  i miss the fact i don't get to enjoy ridge's infancy the way i got to enjoy sawyer's.  i am missing my nephew's first birthday today because it's too risky to go that far away with ridge and his condition and the steroid wean....

we are just weary.  this week has been a real turning point for me- i have become more overwhelmed with everything than i've been the entire time.  it seems there is little breathing room and there is always something going on. our hearts are heavy, our house is somber, and we need your prayers, still.  i know a day is coming where we will be able to smile genuinely. we will be able to break through the darkness by the grace of God.  so we keep trudging on.  but it just seems like we need a break.  praise the Lord ridge has been doing well- i do remember to stop and count my blessings.  but this raining/pouring episode has got to end.  not that i call the shots...because if anything, i am fully aware that i do not.  no matter how much i want to. 

so tonight, i'm going to snuggle in with my boys and watch a late night movie.  and think of pa pa.  i will leave you with this:

nothing

well i don't have anything much to say.  this week has been horrible. and it's not over yet.  it has felt all week, tonight included, like we have been pelted with bad after bad after bad.  so discouraging.  i know everything has it's purpose...but sometimes i feel like isn't it enough to be living with one hardship?  who am i to gripe, i don't know.  just know there is a lot going on in both of our families, more than we would feel bearable even without ridge's situation.  so keep those prayers coming for ridge.  but keep them coming for all four of us, and all of our extended families as well.  more posting later. sorry i don't have anything funny or witty or life changing to tell you today.  it's just been one of those weeks.  i hope it hasn't been one of those weeks for you as well.  anyway, more to come.  be not discouraged, we all know there's a silver lining.  we all know God has a plan.  but...working through it is not so easy. not that anything is supposed to be easy, right? right. anyway, i have a lot i want to share with you all but i don't know how much of it is "share-able" yet.  so, in the next few days, i will enlighten you as to the heavy hearts at my house.  enjoy your weekend.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

quick suggestions

A few of you have asked so I will do my best here. 

shampoo i like best, that is available at least at our walmart and target, is the organix brand of shampoos.  l'oreal everpure is a newer one that is also sodium sulfate free.  target carries one or two other brands as well.  but our walmart and our target carry both the organix and the l'oreal everpure.  i've only tried the organix. it has several different types.

i don't have a ton of makeup suggestions- because i use and sell arbonne.  however, i also like the physician's formula organic line (that's the  brand, physician's formula)-- not all of it is organic.  sephora sells some all natural products too. 

lotions- i like giovanni organics or burt's bees- both available at target. burt's bees is available at some walmarts.

body wash- method.  available at target.  there's also a brand i think called purely natural, but i might be wrong, and walmart carries that.

if you have any more questions, feel free to comment here or email me at seesawridgeproductions@yahoo.com (i know, a new email)....i will do my best to answer. new post coming soon, not a soapbox this time...but i gotta find time to write one- today has been super hectic.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Tuesday's soapbox

EDIT:  the part included later in this blog about shea butter- shea butter is GOOD.  it is inexpensive.  it was pointed out to me that that part might be confusing, and i reread it, and...it is.  Shea butter=good.  Mineral oil=not so good.  sorry for any confusion!  a link for you- i don't know the person who published this, but it is supportive of some of the other research i've done/training i've received http://bestchoice.itgo.com/dangers_top10.htm

Okay...it's Monday night, not Tuesday.  But I have some soapbox-y-ness.  Maybe I will take Tuesdays, along with probably other days of the week, to step up on that soapbox. Maybe Tuesday can just be the designated day.  You can get on your soapbox if you want, if you have your own blog. Whatever.

First, an update.

We are home.  Ridge is getting over RSV and seems to be doing well.  This well:
My darling husband built that redneck snowman-- the antlers, arrows, and vest were already on it when he took Sawyer out to finish the decor....shotgun shells...and....a tomato.

Fun times.  Yes, Ridge is super cute in his orange vest.  And they both rock in their camo hats that ah hem...yours truly...crafted for them.

So so ready for this road of our lives to be over and normalcy to resume!!!  But enjoying moments like these.

Which were made possible by...the ice.  Thank you, Yukon Public Schools, for calling some snow days into effect.  I know it's an inconvenience to have to make up school.  I get it, I really, truly do.  But you can't imagine how bummed I was on Thursday when Brandon didn't have to go to work at CVTC but we had to go to the hospital!  So by returning home on Sunday from the hospital, and the grace of God and the ice itself allowing us to have (so far) two more snow days- we have reclaimed our weekend.  And spent time together as a family.  I'm on my last requested knitting project (until someone requests another one- which is GREAT by me!) and I'm working on stocking my etsy store.

So it's been good. I love these snow days so far.  Brandon and I are blowing through the Prison Break series we missed a lot of when it was on actual television.  I am super pumped about the LOST premier tomorrow night....I'm missing the Bachelor currently....because I'm writing to you, bloggy friends.

So here's my soapbox for this week.  You can like it or not like it, I don't mind either way. You can stop reading here if you want, I don't care. The following has nothing  to do with MLT or Sawyer's funny-ness, or Ridge or Brandon-- not specifically anyway.  It's just me, sharing something I believe in.  I've got about 3 weeks of these topics lined up. This week, I've settled on something I think a lot more about now-- as in, like the last 2 or 3 years, than I did before.

Organics.

Naturals.

Healthy stuff.

Some of  you just signed off. That's okay.  I'm not that popular anyway, so my feelings are not hurt.  And some of you may disagree or smell conspiracy.  Go ahead.  But if you are still reading, I promise I won't be boring.  Keep on.

I've told you before, I sell Arbonne.  It isn't organic.  Some of it is vegan.  But not organic.  But it is pure, safe, and beneficial.  And it's full of products I love.  However, it is not the only company I pledge allegiance to.  I also love Method products.  I also love (most) ANY organic products.  I'm not just talkin  organic food here- because that is noteworthy as well.  Let's stick to beauty for a few minutes....

do you realize that a lot of the lotions, makeups, what nots we use contain a lot of harmful things?  I'm not gonna highlight all of them.  But a big one- mineral oil- is in a LOT of things.  Not just "cheap" stuff- department store brands, popular smell good brands that have their own stores in the mall or shopping center just up the road.....well...mineral oil....all it does is temporarily make you feel smooth/soft...it's basically baby oil.....but it creates a film, a barrier on your skin that blocks ability to soak in other moisturizers.  It's also known to contribute to hormone imbalances.  Shea butter is a great moisturizer and not really even expensive.  A lot of "popular" lotions that smell soooo awesome smell that way because the oils in them are derived from crude oil, and in their natural state, they stink like no tomorrow.  I don't know. That's sick to me.  Why would I want to use something that is so awful in it's natural state that it has to be covered up for me to use it?  Of course Arbonne is great here, but if you can't afford something like that, there are plenty of brands at WalMarts and Targets across the world that sell MUCH better products.  You don't have to head to Macy's or Dillard's, bc their stuff, a lot of it, is just as full of "bad" things like this.  I'm just sayin....

Makeups...ick.  Naturals all the way here, I think.  Or at least know what you are using.  Soooo many makeups/face cleaners/etc. have weirdo ingredients, OTHER than mineral oil....some have placental ingredients, horse blood, I'm not making this up.  Talc is in most powder makeups, and it's a known carcinogen (although there are studies that refute this, as well as endorse this...so think whatcha like here).  It's fibers are asbestos like, that is where the concern comes from.  I'm not trying to scare you here, I'm just saying.  I think we need to be educated on this stuff, and I  am SO not the best person to educate you, but I am SOMEONE who knows SOMETHING about this, not a ton, but some.  Why in the HECK would we use a product, even if it's cheap, even if we "love" it, if it could cause us cancer?  Really?  REALLY?  I don't get that.

Shampoos--sodium sulfates...no good. They are a skin irritant and damaging to the immune system. I love my sodium sulfate free Arbonne shampoo, but there are a LOT of companies switching to (completely) sulfate free formulas-- Organix is another one I really like, and it's at walmart AND target.  L'oreal has a sulfate free formula too- I don't know what all ELSE is in it, though. 

I just barely hit the nail on the head on that stuff.

Food...well, I just think organic is better.  But if not organic, healthy at least.  Do I never make brownies?  Do I never eat junk food? HECK YES I DO THOSE THINGS.  Brownies last night.  I'm making choc. chip cookies with Sawyer tonight.  But...when I have veggies, whole grains, lean meats, fruits in the house and not other junk, we all eat and feel better.

Cleaning supplies-- shoot. I was at target a couple weeks ago, and they of course sell Method, Seventh Generation, Clorox Green Works...but they had at least three other super good smelling organic or all natural cleaning supplies....that cost basically, if not, the same as the NON-natural ones!  And they are SO much less toxic, smell SO much better, and do as good if not better of a job.  Organic/natural cleaning supplies, food, and cosmetic/hygiene supplies are getting more and more affordable.  There isn't enough regulation on some of the products we are allowed to consume here in the states- MY OPINION- but there is research to back up the harm some of these things can cause.  I will let you be your own researcher.  I just wanted to rant a bit about this.  Because it is important to me that my husband is around as long as possible.  That I am around as long as possible.  That my kids are around as long as possible and as healthy as possible.  I don't want to be contributing, on purpose, to my health in a poor way.  MORE IMPORTANTLY, why would I want to teach my kids bad habits?  I want them to be empowered with the knowledge of healthy decisions- NOT that that is the most important thing in the world....it's not.  But it is important.  That's why rarely do we frequent McDonald's...or any fast food/frenchfry/whatever place.  That is why I rarely buy the cheap/traditional/you'd all know what I'm talking about baby soap....the trade off isn't worth it.  The nostalgic smell isn't worth it.  It isn't.  not to me.  and that's my soapbox.  for this tuesday. monday night. now...off to some baked tilapia, steamed rice, and steamed asparagus! then...chocolate chip cookies!

see:


more pics on the photoblog as well.


and ps- when i went to review my comments, there were 4.  one was concerned that my fears were unwarranted.  but when i came back to edit this post a bit, that comment wasn't there anymore.  so my apologies to whoever that was. if you want to repost it, feel free to do so.  as far as being unwarranted....i've done some research on this stuff, and been to some formal education on it as well.  i'd rather not risk it.  kinda the "better safe than sorry" philosophy, in my book.
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