Thursday, March 20, 2014

Starting to Blog Again-New Direction

So I haven't really  blogged since my son died in February of 2012.

My life had a lot of twists and changes since then...

I adopted my daughter!

Got kissed by a baby wolf!

I went to Ecuador and participated in a Spay Day!  We fixed over 34 dogs and cats as well as brought about $10,000 worth of donated supplies.

I got to see Blue Footed Boobies at Isla de la Plata

I learned how to dress appropriately for outdoor winter activities and learned how to love snow and winter!

Worked on the Veterinary Team for the UP200 Dog Sled Races!

I got a new job and was elected Faculty of the Year!

It's the new job and the fun things I get to do that I plan showcasing on the blog now.  I still plan on talking about my life and the fun things I get to do, but there are a bunch of things I'm having fun with right now that I want to talk about...

Augmented Reality

Flipped Classrooms

Applied Learning Activities

iPads in the Classroom

Different teaching modalities

I know kind of boring for those not into teaching and technology...kind of cool for those that are!  Stick around and see the great things new technology has to offer!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Love Beyond the World

The other night I was reading William Penn’s Fruits of Solitudes (kind of geeky I know).  He can be described as a Quaker Ben Franklin.  The book is his thoughts on a variety of different subjects and his experiences.  I was reading the book because I was looking for some 17th century wisdom regarding death of children and how to go on with your life. 

I came across this section in his chapter Union of Friends.

They that love beyond the World, cannot be separated by it.  Death cannot kill, what never dies.

I take some solace in these two lines of wisdom.  I know that I loved Jake beyond the world. 

When Jake was little we used to play this game…I’d say “I love you more then the leaves on the trees,” and his reply was “I love you more then the sand in the sea” then I’d say I love you more then all the moons and the stars.”  And his answer was “I love you to infinity, and I win because there is nothing more then infinity”  To which I’d reply “Not possible because I love you more.”

Over the years we got out of the love you more game…though we still did a short version into his teenage years.  I think he thought it was silly but I was hoping that one day he would carry on the game with his own children.  

I sat down to read with the Littles to read and Guess How Much I Love You was one of the books that they chose.  I could barely get through it, tears streaming down my face as I remembered the game that Jake and I shared to show that my love was beyond the World.  


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Bargaining for Tomorrow

"There is nothing of which we are apt to be so lavish as of Time, and about which we ought to be more solicitous; since without it we can do nothing in this World. Time is what we want most, but what, alas! we use worst; and for which God will certainly most strictly reckon with us, when Time shall be no more." William Penn

I haven’t slept very well since we got the Littles and after Jake’s death my ability to sleep has just gone to hell.  Little #1 doesn’t sleep through the night yet and once in awhile Little #2 wakes up just as I get Little #1 back to sleep which makes sleep a rare commodity at my house. 

But tonight, I was woken up by someone else crying, my partner.  He has been taking the death of Jake hard. He’s at the bargaining stage of grief.  (I’m still in denial).  He seems to be asking himself  “What if I would have stopped him from leaving that night?” “What if I had tried to talk to him more?” "What if ....?" But nothing can change what happened, no amount bargaining or pleading to wake up from this horrible dream, nothing can change the reality of Jake's death. 

I also think the “I’ll do it tomorrow” attitude that a lot of people fall prey to has hit him.  You all know that attitude…I’ll talk to him tomorrow, or I’ll make everyone sit down for dinner tomorrow, or I’ll try to be more involved TOMORROW.  You always think there will be a tomorrow but sometimes tomorrow never comes.  Sometimes your chance at tomorrow ends with a 4 am knock on the door and two police officers looking grim.  

Maybe we can learn from Littles and their demands for the NOW…maybe we can learn to stop and do the important things NOW as tomorrow may never come.


Friday, March 2, 2012


18 years ago I started on the this amazing journey...

I learned how to dance the mommy dance with my son Jake and that mommy dance has led me to open up my heart to foster children.  Unfortunately on Tuesday February 21st Jake was killed in a tragic car accident.  He was 18, four months away from graduating high school.  He'd been accepted into college and had decided to be an accountant.

The last thing I remember him doing for me was making me a cup of tea.  Exactly how I liked it..with a splash of milk and a scoop of sugar.

I love my son so much...and every day it seems like my heart is breaking even more.  I miss his friendship, I miss his snark, I miss his help, I just miss HIM.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thursday's Query

I have been neglecting my blog for a year now.  I think about sitting down and writing but having two 18 month olds and working and being mom takes its toll.  I have had a query on my mind and felt this would be a good post to get the ball rolling..also the Littles are both sleeping early for once!

Quakers like Queries...(Queries are kind of like Koans..something to meditate upon and see if way opens.)

I have been focusing on this particular query lately;

How do I honor that of God (or light) in my children?  And to take it a little further into my realm as a foster parent...How do I honor that of God (or light) in my children's parents?

While sitting in silence contemplating the query I began to realize that by honoring that of God in my children I really needed to honor that of God in their parents. 

A lot of times as a foster parent you are told about horrendous things that happen to your children before they came to live with you.  It is hard to see that of God (or light) in others when we are blinded by anger and fear and harsh judgements.  But to honor my children I have to take of my blinders because when the blinders come off we see the cracks and "its the cracks in our perfection that lets our light shine through"

Trying to find the good in a child's biological parent helps to build a relationship between the child and the foster parent, as well as helping the biological parent have more self worth.  An individual with more self worth will hopefully become a better parent and start to work on his/her path back to reunification with my children.

Putting my family aside I would ask you...

How do you honor that of God (or light) in your child/ren?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Drink Baby Drink

As most people know, since I'm not shy about telling everyone, I nursed Jake until he was 2...he never used a bottle, never even tasted formula..
And as most nursing moms know breastfed babies eat quite often...sometimes it seems like it never stops..well my experience with breastfeeding has apparently paid off for LO...

How you may ask?  Well I'll tell you...
Since LO was about a 1 1/2 months old she would eat about 3 ounces of formula, never more then that and sometimes even less.  We were feeding her about every 2 was (is) very tiresome sometimes...but hey...that's what happens when you breastfeed so I just chalked it up to baby behavior..
At her 4 month check up I asked the doctor about LO's feeding behavior...every time I switch her to a faster nipple she seems like she's gagging and yet the slow nipple seems to tire her out and she gives up drinking.  The doctor decided that the best thing would be to have LO go for a Speech Therapy consult to see if there was some issues with her muscle tone in her jaw. 

So off we went to see what was going on..
And well, she has no gag reflex, she doesn't have proper suction/feeding technique, and she is very sensory tactile (which apparently is an issue at this age).  The therapist said we should also keep an eye on her because she might have a sensory processing disorder. 

So what does this have to do with breastfeeding?  Well these are all issues that would have been noticed in the first few weeks of nursing and though they would have caused a nursing mom some issues, a skilled lactation consultant would have been able to help correct some of the issues by proper mouth placement.
Talking to the therapist helped me feel better, I thought I was over reacting..but what really made me feel good was the therapist said that most of the babies that she sees with LO's issues are severly underweight..and the fact that she is at the proper weight shows how well I read/respond to her cues and that my experience as a breastfeeding mother is what helped the most.  Since I was already subconsciously prepared to be feeding almost constantly.

So over the next few months we are doing physical therapy...she has been switched to a different nipple, a different type of pacifier.  We have to use this funky chewy tube thing when ever we are just sitting around. And I have to do this cheek exercise and a lip exercise..and that's just for this week.  Next week there are some other things we have to start..she didn't want to overwhelm me..(ha ha)

So the good thing about this whole situation is that by catching this early her eating, swallowing, and speech won't be affected..

All because I was a breastfeeding mom!


Friday, January 14, 2011

The Twilight Zone-House of Mirrors..

So, yesterday was my son's 17th birthday...I spent some time thinking back about my excitement of bring this wonderful fabulous new life into the world.  I wanted the best for my son so I breastfed, did all the required attachment parenting techniques..and look at what it got me? 

(First some son had a really close friend when we lived in Las Vegas..his name was Charles they rode the bus together in elementary school, I haven't seen him in about 5 years..please keep this in mind when you look at the screenshots below...)

This is a screen from my son's facebook page.. I was a little confused..I assumed that CHARLES was now calling himself CHARLIE...and my son's friends were trying to straighten me out!

I have now totally embarrassed Jake and he has stepped in and sorted his mom out...I'm not sure why this deserves a double facepalm..but...okay...I'm trying to just be humorous about this..

BTW my son came in and said...CHARLES is a completely different name the CHARLIE..really? I mean, Charlie could be Charles and just chooses to be called Charlie as a nickname...Jake's name is Jacob but we call him Jake!  When I pointed this out..he started telling me last I remember those..gee!

Then this appears this morning...

WTH???  I shouldn't be on the internets???  Just cuz I was confused by a name? ? And do I really deserve to have an Audi call me out? 

Well I guess I'm going to stop commenting on my son's FB page as it is a house of mirrors and I became lost and confused..