Monday, December 15, 2008

Time has flown by...

Since I last posted. We went on vacation in September to the Pikes Peak area of Colorado. It was absolutely wonderful. I love being around the mountains. It somehow brings the reality of God's creation to life for me. Beautiful!!

We are in full Christmas season preparation and celebration at our house. Last night we added more lights and a train on top of the piano and the boys commented that it looked like a "Winter Wonderland".

Blessings at Christmas as we celebrate our Saviors birth.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Marriage....what is it?

This was a question recently posed to me by my youngest son (5). I realized that defining marriage to a 5 year old is tough. I proceeded to tell him that when a lady and a man love each other and want to be together forever, they get married in a church and tell everyone there and God that they will be together and love each other and then they may go on to have children. I wasn't sure I succeeded in my explanation but I gave it my best.

My son said to me later that day, "I'm going to marry you, mommy". Now, Scott happened to be around and he repeated this to his dad. Scott replied, I don't think I can let you do that. Mommy is my wife. Child #3 ran out of his room after his dad saying, "but daddy, you have to let me marry mommy." I tried to contain my smiles because to him, this was serious business.

How amazing to be loved and admired so much by your child. It is truly a little overwhelming!!

On Tuesday I was preparing to go to a small group meeting that is listening to some conference cd's from a Wholehearted Women's conference. My middle son asked, " Why do you have to go to this meeting? What are you going to do there?" I told him that I was going to be with these other moms and to learn how to be a better mom. He replied, "but you're already a good mom".

Once again, I was amazed at the love and admiration that my son has for me. I think because I see myself as such a flawed person. I am a sinner and so I know that I am capable of veering off of God's path and trying to make my own way. I see the errors of my ways and recognize how I may be failing. My boys, however, see the parts of me that I often cannot see myself. They choose the good moments, the fun and the times I get it right and remember that.

This is not a new idea. I have had conversations with my own mom about her shortcomings as a mom when we were growing up. She laments the mistakes she made and I remind her that I don't remember those things, I remember her sacrifice to be at my volleyball games. The little things she did to show us she loved us. I remember the good things.

How thankful I am that my boys can see the love I have for them even in the midst of my mistakes. How thankful I am that I have a Father in heaven who loves me so much that He made this possible. Thankful!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Getting back to normal...

Ok. Last time I posted, we were finishing up our HBOT treatment with my oldest son. We finished in early May and clearly, there are some things that are continuing to improve post-treatment. We have had improved language, reasoning and generally better expression. I told Scott it's like he's living outside his head. It's glorious!! There was a time when an entire car ride would have absolutely no conversation unless a question was asked of him. Now, he volunteers information; specifically information regarding his thoughts and feelings. This is a huge thing for a child on the autism spectrum!!!! Praise God!

Even though school is out, we are continuing to school throughout the summer. This allows us time to go on vacation when everyone else is back in school and since it's so hot in the afternoon, we play outside in the morning and school toward lunch and then spend most of the afternoon doing other things.

Next week, for the first time every, all of my boys will be in vacation bible school. From Mon - Thurs in the morning, they will attend our churches VBS program. I will have 3 whole hours without my boys. I love them dearly and love spending time with them but this is a novel moment in my life right now as I actually get some time by myself. (grocery shopping doesn't count as time by oneself) The only problem with this is I have a million things I can think of doing and my brain is a little scattered as I ponder them all.

Funny things overheard/seen at my house lately,

my youngest son telling his brothers that his bear has a fever and has "fluenza".

When Scott told our oldest to come practice piano by using his shortened name, he responded by saying, "Daddy, please call me......" his full first name. We didn't know how important that really was to him.

Today, we rode to the soccer field by our house and my middle son brought his bear. He rode stuck through the holes on his bike helmet and dear son even made him a "helmet" by using some string and the bottom of a chuckecheese coin cup. Very creative and cute!!

Life is never dull and more than that, a blessing everyday. I hope your day is duly blessed!

Friday, April 25, 2008

A Diving We Will Go!

I haven't posted lately because for the last 3 weeks, I have been taking my oldest son to daily (M-F) hyperbaric oxygen dives. As of today we have completed 15 dives and have 5 more to do. It has been tiring as we have had to take the younger two to be with grandpa each morning and make sure we leave the house by 7:30 am to wind our way through traffic.

For those not in the "know", HBOT (hyperbaric oxygen therapy) has been used in the past couple of years in increasing amounts to assist children with autism on their road to recovery. My oldest was diagnosed almost 5 years ago with PDD-NOS (or autism spectrum disorder). It has been a long path full of trials, tribulations and trial and error. But for all of our efforts and by God's grace, he is doing wonderfully and I dare say, moving ever closer to recovery.

More will be coming as we complete our dives and get back to normal. As for now, blessings on this wonderful Spring Friday!! May God richly bless you today!!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

What does your badge say?

My youngest has become quite the social butterly lately. Yesterday, for example, while in line at Target, he looked up and asked our cashier what her name was. She replied and asked his and he answered, "I'm "J", nice to meet you Kristy", and proceeded to give her five.

While at dinner at CiCi's, his desire to meet and greet took over again. As we stood in line waiting to get some brownies, he tapped the leg of the man in front of us and it went something like this, "What's your name?". "My name is Tony." "What's your name?" "My name is "J" , the five year old boy!" I add the exclamation because at this point he was hopping with excitement as he got to pronounce, "the five year old boy!"

My husband commented to me earlier this week that he's been wearing his new age like a badge of honor. And, he has. Many things are now linked to the fact that he is five and he is tinkled pink by this.

Likewise, my middle son recently had a birthday and turned 7. Now he doesn't go around proclaiming his age for everyone but his "badge" has become that he got a Nintendo DS (from his uncle) and some Heeleys skate shoes. He is now "M" the DS-playing-skate-shoe-wearing boy.

And, of course, not to be outdone, my oldest also has his badge. He loves vehicles. Specifically cars (Nissan Altima, Nissan 350z) but closely followed by trucks (Dodge Ram, Semis). While he doesn't go around announcing that he is "N" the car loving boy.... Oh, wait. He does! He tells anyone who will listen what he loves and thereby shares that which he so closely identifies with. His badge, if you will.

As I lay in bed this morning (it's now 5am) and couldn't get back to sleep, it struck me that my children are illustrating perfectly the need for identification. We all have this intense need to identify with someone or something. This revelation, though not completely new, certainly illuminates the intense need to help and guide my children on their path.

Though their "badges" right now are harmless enough, not too far down the road, they could become much less so. How much more crucial is it that I share the love of Christ so that they can have/make the choice of their badge reading "follower of Christ".

I recently read someone's opinion that we shouldn't share our faith with our children. Rather, we should allow them to come to their own decisions and not "influence" them. Besides being unscriptural, my children are perfect examples of why this is not valid. We all have this inherent need and can only make an informed decision of what badge to wear if we are exposed. While I cannot control whether my children choose to be followers of Christ, I can control whether or not they hear the message and recognize the opportunity that has been laid out before them.

Blessings to you as we celebrate the resurrection of our Risen Lord. May it be a time of celebration, confirmation and adoration. And as you go about it all; what does your badge say?

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Happy Birthday....

To my youngest. His birthday culminated with a tiny gathering at the local pizza/game place with immediate family and Grandma and Grandpa. He loved every minute of it. He is now a big 5 year old and very proud of it.

Something I started in the past few years has been to include my boys in the preparations for their celebrations. For my youngest that meant dictating the type of cake he wished for, getting a birthday list for gift ideas, deciding on the pizza place, going to the party store to gather decorations and "goodies" for his guests (brothers) and ended with great celebration as he helped make his cake and got to lick the beaters. Every inch of his body was taken over by excitement as he prepared and anticipated his birthday. It was glorious to watch and I'm so glad that the Lord has blessed me with this particular joy.

And so, after the pizza and cake were eaten, the presents opened and the general merriment was coming down from it's intense climax, I reflected on the joyful experience. It occurred to me that the preparation for the party, the total involvement of my youngest in it all contributed a great deal to his excitement and enjoyment. Isn't that a picture of the great love the Father has for us? We could simply exist here on this planet waiting expectantly for His return and eternity, but God, in His intense love for us, has allowed us to be a part of the preparation. How glorious!

Friday, February 22, 2008

I've got the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy

down in my heart. Or should I say that my youngest son (4 soon to be 5) does. Not only is it in his heart, it's in his eyes, his smile and most of all the constant dancing and excitement that accompanies him everywhere he goes.

So it was today. It's a beautiful day here and having gotten a coupon for Gymboree from a friend, I decided to check out the local store. We got to the new local shopping area and the boys were enthused. We parked and made our way into Gymboree and they were now getting excited. After some searching and looking and asking them for help, my youngest proceeded to find some underwear with airplanes on them. He brought them over jumping up and down and asking if he could get them. It's almost his birthday and any 4 year old who is that excited, should get the underwear of his choice. He produced them for the clerk and proudly announced that he was getting new underwear.

I paid for all of our finds and he asked for his own bag for his underwear. He proceeded to hop, spin and proudly display his new underwear in a clear bag for all to see. He was truly experiencing joy.

It occurred to me that he is capable of expressing the kind of joy I often feel but in my adult world, I can find myself tempering it's expression. How amazing to let it all go and really enjoy the smallest and seemingly most mundane things in life. It so awesome to realize that God cares about us down to our new underwear and to truly praise Him in all things.

I love my children and especially love that I have such wonderful examples of how to express joy. What a loving God we have!!