Tuesday, February 21, 2012


Let me just say that I didn't choose this journey. And I don't even like it. But sometimes things that you don't choose or like are necessary. I have children (mainly my girls) that are allergic to "stuff". I say stuff because I have yet to figure out what. Ever since weaning them from breastmilk, my girls have been plagued with all sorts of allergy symptoms. Lindsay with eczema, sinus issues and now psoriasis. Haley with mainly eczema with sleep and behavior possibly linked to the allergies also.

I had Lindsay tested (poor girl, that was no fun. It was like 107 skin barbs that she was poked/scratched with. She just laid there taking it, but crying quietly.) and I was very dissatisfied. It is such an imperfect science. If I had known that I might not have gone through with it. The only thing we got out of it is that she's severely allergic to dust mites. We did the allergy shots for a while but I was not seeing much improvement-by a while I mean 2 years or so-and the clinic was always closed on the afternoons we could make the drive! Frustrating!

At the beginning of this year we dove in. As of January 2nd we went dairy free. Other than a few mistakes (learning curve) we did very well. For about 2 weeks now we've not been on track but that's changing again...it's just hard when you're out and with people all the time. Anyway, during that time I did see improvement in some of Lindsay's symptoms! No one else really (other than me, but I've always known I had issues with lactose at the very least) except maybe Nathan. For the first time I can remember, when he got a cold it didn't land us in the ER with croup. That was a nice change.

Now, because the psoriasis and eczema are not better--and for Lindsay the eczema has come back, when it was just psoriasis now--and might in fact be worse. We are moving on to removing wheat from our diet. Not gluten yet, just wheat. Just wheat. Ha. In thinking about this, I've started perusing the labels of some of our favorite things...and the terriyaki marinade we love...yep. Wheat. And what do we normally eat for lunch? Sandwiches. Or spaghetti. I know that there are alternative noodles for spaghetti but I think the tomato is causing things to flare up too. Not necessarily an allergy, just too much acid or something.

But when you look at your little girl and see this:
something has to change.
And if Lindsay would not be mortified I would take a picture of her psoriasis. But being that she is almost 12, that kind of thing embarrasses her.
So, here we go. I am gathering ideas for our new challenge. Tomorrow is grocery shopping (ie pay) day so I have to be ready to go. 

Saturday, February 18, 2012


We joined a 4-H club last year but just kind of participated on the fringes of things. We didn't participate in any of the show stuff or anything like that. We didn't even go and see the competition. This year we ended up only entering 3 things between the two older kids. I tried to prepare them for not winning at all because there would be so many entries. And I told (especially Jared) them that just because they didn't win it didn't diminish their art/project. It was still good. No matter what it won or didn't win. Weeeellllll, they won! All 3 projects/pieces won....BLUE ribbons! I was so happy for them and proud. But the proudest moment of all was surely the look on Lindsay's face when she saw JARED had won a first place ribbon for his drawing. Not even knowing she had won ANYthing at this point. She later told me that before we left she had prayed that, even if she won't nothing, Jared would place with his drawing. He tends to be very unsure of himself and she knew he needed that to feel validated. I love that she was more concerned for him than for herself.

Lindsay's photograph also won the same kind of ribbon that Jared's artwork won. I don't have a photo of her photo though. :)

Friday, February 17, 2012

Sibling Love

Some days I think we won't make it through the day. The fighting. And it's this under cover kind of antagonistic thing. It's not outright "so-and-so hit me for no reason". Well, they do say that sometimes but there was usually some kind of provocation whether they realize admit it or not. Some of this is so foreign to me because my siblings are much younger than me (one 10 years and one 14 years) so I was kind of an only child. But I do know that at the end of the day, they love each other.

These pictures were taken right after a knock-down-drag-out-screaming fight between the two sweet faces you are looking at.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

French Toast

1. French Bread (I buy mine at our grocery store-it is fresh baked and can be bought warm)
2. Slice--I slice as thin as possible which isn't very thin at all.
3. I mix egg and cinnamon sugar in a mixing bowl.
4. Dip each piece of bread into egg mixture.
5. Fry in oil (make sure the oil is very hot before you drop your bread in there or the bread will just absorb the oil-gross!)
6. Voila! A plate of yummy goodness!
7. We use syrup or confectioner's sugar to top it.
8. Enjoy!

I don't normally like french toast (probably partly because we use wheat bread for all other purposes and french toast loses something with wheat bread in my opinion. :) ) but this is so good! Also note that we don't eat this on a daily basis. ;)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day

I don't know where you fall in the Valentine's Day opinion spectrum. Do you love it? Hate it? Don't care two whits about it?
I'm kind of between "hate it" and "don't care two whits about it". I think it's an awful pressure-filled holiday that just gets a lot of men in trouble. Needlessly. I hate when I hear men saying "Oh, I'm going to be in trouble if I don't get her something for [enter any "romantic" occasion"]. Just because a guy doesn't rush out and buy you flowers or jewelry one day of the year does not mean he doesn't love you or think about you. Wanna know how I know this? I have a husband. The same one I've had for 17 1/2 years now. And he's not romantic. But he loves me.
1)he comes home every night
2)he calls me on his lunch hour
3)he listens when I need a friend
4)he values what I value
5)he cares when I hurt
6)he is spending his life with me
7)he loves our kids
8)he knows when I need a break-and encourages it usually
9)he tells me he loves me
10) works hard to provide for our family (so that I can stay home with the kids!)

Do I think flowers are pretty? Absolutely. Do I need them because the calendar says it's time to get flowers? Nope. Do I think cards are nice? Yes. Do I need one just because there is something on the calendar? Nope. I know, Hallmark probably hates people like us. We didn't even get cards for each other! In fact we often don't get cards for each other for our anniversary. I think those things are nice but only if the sentiment is there every day too. And right now, we honestly don't have the money to spend on cards and flowers. I'd rather he save the money and spend it on a date night. Later. When everyone and their grandma is not at the restaurant. Not because the calendar says it's time for a date but because he wants to take me out.

Wasting Time

You know, you can waste a lot of time wishing that someone was something they are not. It's best if you just accept a person for who he or she is. Life is too short.
I had to learn this lesson as a very young person. I married when I was 18 and had some notions of what marriage "should" be. I thought it was roses and candlelight. When really it's the little stuff that makes the difference. I determined not long after that I was getting my ideas from romance novels. *eyes roll* Those "men" in those books are fictional. Created by women for women. No man in there! When I put down the romance novels I started to see how I was wrong to expect my husband to be something that a man (a normal one) couldn't do. Never do I get flowers (ok, rarely. But we can't afford them anyway and I'd be kind of mad if he wasted money on them. 
People are who they are. Sure, some habits can be changed and people can improve upon what they are but you can't change who a person is (God can but that's a whole different post). It's hard enough to change yourself-impossible to change someone else.
You can wish your family was different, or you can accept them for who they are and love them
You can wish your child was different, or you can accept him or her for who he or she is and have a great relationship.
You can wish your husband was different, or you can love him for who he is and find the good in him (and realize that anyone you live with for years and years will sometimes annoy you!).
That's all. Just don't waste your time wishing someone you love was different.

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