I’m excited to be sharing with you about a wonderful organization called Believe in Heroes. Believe in Heroes is an organization that has helped raise more than $16 million for the Wounded Warrior Project which in turn has helped serve more than 40,000 wounded service members. The Wounded Warrior Project helps wounded service members and […]
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This past week, we’ve been… John has been calling a couple times a day, which is nice. He downloaded Magic Jack on his phone, and uses that to call, and we usually video chat while waiting for The Munchkin’s bus. I can’t imagine how families of deployed soldiers got by before technology. Snail mail is not enough. I […]View full post
On Saturday, the boys and I participated in The Color Run in Manhattan. I hemmed and hawed about going, but finally bit the bullet and bought the ticket the night before. I thought $45 seemed a little steep for a 5k, but it ended up being totally worth it. The boys were confused as to […]View full post
Recent truths have come to light-- finally after 13 years.
Its truth that has long been waiting to be revealed by Honest now individuals. It has weighed heavy on this scientists.
He breaks because he doesnt want to lie anymore.
Who wants to keep lying?
No one does.
Except those that want to keep the truth ( the greater truth) hidden
There are more lies to be uncovered- I guarantee it!
Why is the CDC not mentioning that they have committed fraud to the american public-- to African Americans?
Why have they not come forward and publicly admitted it?
Because they don't want the truth to be known.
They are downplaying the scandal.
They don't want attention.
Think vaccines don't cause autism?
Why is the CDC not talking about the recent news?
They should be publicly defending themselves over this-- yet they are not...
lack of action speaks louder than the words that aren't said...
I can tell you vaccines do cause autism.
The only ones that say otherwise-- work for and have special interests with Pharma.
I’m excited to be sharing with you about a wonderful organization called Believe in Heroes. Believe in Heroes is an organization that has helped raise more than $16 million for the Wounded Warrior Project which in turn has helped serve more than 40,000 wounded service members.
The Wounded Warrior Project helps wounded service members and their families that are faced with many physical challenges as well as those with PTSD. This project is so important to me as a military spouse and as a united states citizen. I feel that no matter who we are, we should help those who have given so much for our country. Even just a little can go a long way.
You might remember awhile back that I posted about my friend, Jacqueline whose husband is a wounded warrior. She started an organization to help children of wounded warriors and just reading about her and her little family every day via Facebook makes me so thankful and so blessed. You can read more about her and husband who is a wounded warrior in my post: The General’s Kids: Helping the Children of Wounded Warriors.
Now, you can do YOUR part! You can help wounded warriors via the Believe in Heroes organization by simply grocery shopping. That’s right, you heard me. Grocery shopping.
Each participating brand and retailer in the Believe in Heroes campaign is helping further the Wounded Warrior Project mission – to honor and empower Wounded Warriors.”
Get $25.00 in coupon savings while shopping for and buying brands that care. Download the coupons here: http://goo.gl/a5tgXR. You can get more information on how and where to save and shop on the site. Coupons are available until November 30th, 2014 or while supplies last.
You can also support the Wounded Warrior Project by purchasing Believe in Heroes merchandise in stores or through their online store. There are plenty of ways you can help support these wonderful men and women! Please share and spread the word. Do your part and you can make a difference too!
I’m participating in the 2014 Believe in Heroes® blogger campaign and received compensation as part of the program.
The post Believe in Heroes: Supporting Wounded Warriors Through Grocery Shopping appeared first on Singing through the Rain.
On Saturday, the boys and I participated in The Color Run in Manhattan. I hemmed and hawed about going, but finally bit the bullet and bought the ticket the night before. I thought $45 seemed a little steep for a 5k, but it ended up being totally worth it.
The boys were confused as to why we had to wake up early, but they were pretty good about it, and ate their breakfast without issue. I was pretty bummed though, because it was SO COLD OUT. It was 39 degrees when we got to the race. Ridiculous. I managed to find a light cream blanket in our linen closet, and draped it over the boys in the jogger.
I made them their own runners’ bibs, because The Munchkin wanted his own for the 4th of July Kid’s Fun Run, and I was unprepared. Lesson learned! Once I signed in, I copied my bib number onto their bibs with a Sharpie, and pinned it on him. The Bean kept saying “cold, cold, cold, cold” when I took him out from under the blanket to pin his on, so I pinned it to the blanket instead, haha.
We got there late; right as the race was starting, and I highly recommend it. No lines for sign in, minimal people around to make you feel rushed while you do silly things like pin homemade runners’ bibs on your kids… the only draw backs were the parking (far away) and that we were at the back of the line. Truthfully, we probably could have just joined in the line where-ever, but life lessons here people. Life lessons. You wait your turn and don’t cut people in line. Thems the rules.
While we were waiting, we saw some dude dressed up as a unicorn, and The Munchkin was So. Excited. It was pretty funny.
I honestly didn’t think I would run the whole thing, since I knew The Munchkin would want to do it with me, but I barely ran at all. The Munchkin ran for about the first quarter mile or so, and then walked. The whole rest of the way. Haha we had fun though. I don’t think he really understood why it was a “color run” at first, so when we got to the first color station, and a lady sprayed him with a teeny bit of yellow, he was shocked and confused. Then, I told him it was ok, got some on myself, and a big grin spread across his face.
As we walked to the next color station, we guessed which color we’d get sprayed with. He said red, and I guessed blue. I was right. He had run going through the powder, but then was SO SAD. I couldn’t figure it out. I thought he was sad because it wasn’t red. I was half right. As we walked, I wracked my brain to try and think of the reason he might be so suddenly sad. Then, I had an idea. “OH! You know that wasn’t the last color, right?” He looked up at me with a surprised look. I told him there were at least two more, and he started jumping up and down; practically skipping down the road, saying “YAY! More colors!” The next color was pink, but for some reason, he decided it was red, so I ran with it, since I didn’t want him to be sad about the color again. He had SO MUCH FUN in the
pink red ah, pink, and ran back and forth through it. I actually got freaked out at that point, because I lost him in the crowd. I found him, obviously, but I made sure to keep a better eye on him at the next color station.
If you’re wondering how The Bean felt about the color, he did ok with it. He was a little weirded out at first by a stranger tossing random handfuls of colored powder on him, but once I smiled at him, said “yay” and clapped a bit, he got on board with the whole thing. Luckily, people kept it pretty light for him, and most of it got on the blanket, but the pink people put it right on top of his head. I held my breath at that one, but he was ok with it. Whew.
We were third to last to finish, and got to the main after party area just in time for the last two color throws. The Munchkin found the unicorn guy again, and we picked up some trash and got a bumper sticker. Good times! These are the faces they made when I said that there was “no more colors”. I’m not sure how we got all the way into the van before they realized it was over, but … We can’t wait to do another one! I think today was the first day since Saturday that The Munchkin hasn’t asked if we’re doing “more colors” today, ha.
Yes, we PCSed here to California in January, but don't worry, we are not PCSing again already. We are currently living in base housing and have decided to buy a house!!!! We are moving off base to another area, which will unfortunately mean the kids will be changing schools again, which I hate and I feel guilty about it. However I know it will be better in the long run!
The schools in the district we are moving to are MUCH better than the school they are at right now on base. Also, Sissy is in 6 grade and after we move she will be going to a Middle School which I feel will be really good for her and give her a little more since of independence and maturity!
So, that means right now, for the next month-ish (however much longer before we move) is the very last time my children will both be at the same school ever again!! Kinda crazy!
The base Elementary School they are both currently at goes up to 8th grade which I think is a little weird. I was in Elementary to 6th grade then Middle School was 7th and 8th. I like the idea of Middle School starting at 6th instead, but I couldn't imagine having Sissy stay as the current school through 8th grade then going to High School. She does currently have the same schedule setup of 7 different periods/classes throughout the day like Middle School which is good, but I think the older kids (6th, 7th, 8th) need that separation from Elementary of Middle School as a stepping stone to prepare them for High School.
I don't yet know when we are moving, it takes time, and lots of paperwork, to buy a house. I am hoping we move around the end of the month or the beginning of next! I really want to be unpacked and have time to decorate for Halloween!!!!
The shelves inside Christian book stores are filled with Bible Story books. These books can sometimes be found inside mega-chain book stores, discount book stores, yard sales, swap-meets, pawn shops, libraries and the list goes on. You’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all, right? What could be so special about this one?
Here is what Amazon says:
Magnificent Tales are rhyming Bible stories with clever art and clear lessons that the whole family will enjoy. The stories and illustrations are so engaging that you won’t grow tired of reading and rereading a Magnificent Tale night after night! From “The Salty Tale of Noah and the Ark” to “The Lasting Story of the Last Supper,” the rhyming tales in this book remind us that God loves his people—in the Bible and today!
I have a lot of Children’s Bible story books. When I was asked to review this Bible Story book, I thought to myself, “What is so special about this particular one that makes it different than the rest I already own?” When I received the book, I was immediately drawn to the cover illustration. Stating that it is beautiful just doesn’t seem to give it justice. However, my excitement pales in comparison with that of my 5 year old. He LOVES to read stories about Jesus. As we paged through the book, we were both mesmerized by the beautifully detailed pictures throughout this book. I’m sure we’ve all seen pictures of Jesus sitting on a large stone speaking to children, or something similar to this. Many of us relate this depiction as Jesus loves the little children. The pictures found in “Magnificent Tales” consumed my 5 year old and he was able to easily relate to the stories. All three of my boys were captivated by the pictures. In fact, my middle son said, “Mommy the pictures are really nice!” Although he is 10 and doesn’t need a Children’s Bible Story book to comprehend the Bible Stories, he loves reading aloud with us!
The age range suggested for this book is 4-8. The stories are written especially for young readers; however, as previously mentioned, my 10 year old also enjoyed it. The fascinating stories are presented in the same order they are found in the Bible. The fact that the stories rhyme makes them that much more interesting for children. Also, what easier way to memorize than by rhyming?
The ONLY thing I could pick on if I was going to pick on anything is it didn’t cover the book of Revelation. Then again, the majority of Children’s Bible Story books do not either. However, this doesn’t affect me using the book nor or how great the book is for my family. I think my boys, especially my youngest, will enjoy this book for years to come. All my boys are already reading well, but this is a good book to work on reading speed with them! I give this a 5/5!
You can get a copy by clicking below:
Also, here is your chance to enter to win a copy yourself!!!
A far cry from your Supermen and your X-Men, but the everyday Joe who makes a difference in their life, as well as the lives of others. It doesn't take superhuman strength or a gazillion gadgets. Nor does it take a radio active spider, to prove to society that you are hero. It takes compassion and kindness. Courage, and internal strength. Heroes are those people who without a second thought, try and make a positive difference in the world. They are the ones that come from their own personal struggles to raise above it and come out of it ok.
They are the mothers and fathers, that go to ends of the earth to make sure that their children are taken care of. The single parents that are working two to three jobs just to make sure there is food in their children's bellies. They are the parents that get devastating news concerning their child, but yet put a brave face on, so their child doesn't worry. They are the parents that have had to prematurely bury their children when they have departed to soon from this earth.
They are the people that swear to protect and up hold the law, still with honor and dignity. They are your members of the military, that bravely enlisted to protect the freedoms you have today. They are the family members that are left behind during deployments. The child that waves the American Flag so proudly while they watch their parent go. They are the mothers, fathers, wives, husbands and children that sit in front of a grave stone watching a 21 gun salute.
They are the person who doesn't see the disability that has labelled them. They are people who fight for acceptance. The people who take what is given to them and who make it work.
They are the fighters and dreamers who try to make this world a better place. They are the figures that personify just what equality and peace is. They are the Dr.Martin Luther King Jr's, The Ghandi's, the Dali Lama's of this world. They are the people who never gave up. The Rosa Parks', The Nelson Mandelas and the Harvey Milk's of this world.
Heroes are everywhere. They are the people that hold the door open for you. They are the people,who when they see you struggle are there to help you back on your feet. They are the good Samaritans that help in an accident or who help you calm your nerves. They are the people,who pay it forward. They are the people who don't care where you come from or who you are but are willing to respect you as human being.
So when we look at heroes, very rarely do we look at the person staring back at us in the mirror. Most of us don't think we are the all that special, but in reality, we just might be a hero to someone and just don't know it. Within ourselves there is a hero that is either waiting to emerge or they are part of who we are.
I am always on the lookout for kid’s books that my kids will love. My son loves to be read to, and I am hoping my daughter will too when she gets a bit older. I was given the opportunity to read and review Jonah and the Great Big Fish by Rhonda Gowler Greene and my son is really enjoying it!
My Review of Jonah and the Great Big Fish
I love that this book is so big, bright, and colorful. My son enjoyed looking at the pages and I enjoyed looking too. The book is in rhyme which is cute, and my son seems to prefer books like that as well. I liked that it kept with the biblical account of the story and that for the most part it was easy to read.
One of the things I didn’t care for was the way it rhymed. It seemed to have missing words. For example:
“God told Jonah to obey,
said, ‘Go to Nineveh this day.”
Seems to me it would be easier to add the “He” to the second line and I find myself reading it that way sometimes. I also was sad that the book ended with Jonah saying he would go to Nineveh, but that it didn’t complete the story. I think it would have been a great book to have it a little longer and to finish the story of what happened in Nineveh.
All-in-all it was a great book. It says for ages 3-7 and I thought that covered a good age group. I definitely plan on keeping it around for both my kids and maybe buy the companion stories by Rhonda Gowler Greene too!
Other Biblical Stories by Rhonda Gowler Greene:
It is no secret that reading and modesty are two passions in my life. Other than my faith in Christ and my family, what better joy can be found outside of modesty books? LOL. So, I thought I would share with you some of my favorites.
1. The Secret Keeper:
We live in the age of low-rise jeans, belly button rings, and backless shirts. Many girls and young women today could not even define the word modesty, let alone tell you how to live it out. Teen girls often ask:
Why can’t I wear what everyone else is wearing? My parents are hung up on their old sense of fashion. Times have changed, why can’t I? Isn’t is really the guy’s problem if he is tempted?
In a fresh and trusted voice, Dannah Gresh has a new message for them: modesty itself is a delicate yet formidable power. In Secret Keeper, she teaches that modesty not only issues a challenge for one man to romantically earn your virtue, but it also expresses your love for and obedience to God.
Includes The “Truth or Bare” Fashion Tests and Fashion Challenges that will resonate with a teen girl
2. The Secret Keeper Devotional: 35-Day Experience with the Delicate Power of Modesty:
Secret Keeper Devos journal is a great follow-up study to the Secret Keeper book. It invites teenage girls to interact with biblical texts on modesty and God’s view of true beauty. With blank pages for the reader’s responses, this 30-day devotional will challenge girls to view themselves as masterpieces created by God. Includes 20 perforated cards with text on both sides.
3. A Return to Modesty: Discovering the Lost Art of Virtue:
Updated with a new introduction, this fifteenth anniversary edition of A Return to Modesty reignites Wendy Shalit’s controversial claim that we have lost our respect for an essential virtue: modesty.
When A Return to Modesty was first published in 1999, its argument launched a worldwide discussion about the possibility of innocence and romantic idealism. Wendy Shalit was the first to systematically critique the “hook-up” scene and outline the harms of making sexuality so public.
Today, with social media increasingly blurring the line between public and private life, and with child exploitation on the rise, the concept of modesty is more relevant than ever. Updated with a new preface that addresses the unique problems facing society now, A Return to Modesty shows why “the lost virtue” of modesty is not a hang-up that we should set out to cure, but rather a wonderful instinct to be celebrated.
A Return to Modesty is a deeply personal account as well as a fascinating intellectual exploration into everything from seventeenth-century manners to the 1948 tune “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” Beholden neither to social conservatives nor to feminists, Shalit reminds us that modesty is not prudery, but a natural instinct—and one that may be able to save us from ourselves.
4. Modest: Men and Women Clothed in the Gospel:
Modesty is about freedom, not rules. Does that seem off? What we mean is that what you say or do or wear is not really the point, not ultimately. In a sense, we don’t even care what you choose. But we care a lot about why you make the choices you do regarding clothing or speech or behavior. Because what really matters here is your heart. The point of this book is that true modesty does not come from following a list of rules. It flows naturally from a solid grasp of the gospel. That means modesty doesn’t need to look the same from one person to another. It’s about your motivations, not your wardrobe.
5. Christian Modesty and The Public Undressing of America:
In the Church today, there are few cows quite as sacred as the right of modern Christians to dress however they please. But in this groundbreaking work, Jeff Pollard challenges us to embrace God’s standard and to understand the historical roots of the rise of nudity and immodesty in modern culture. His perspective is thoughtful and balanced. Most importantly, he accomplishes what few authors on this subject have achieved: a treatise that avoids both license and legalism. A courageous booklet.
6. The Look: Does God really Care What I wear?
Nancy Leigh DeMoss challenges Christians to ask themselves tough questions: Who decides what I will wear, and why? What message does my clothing communicate? And, how can I reflect the glory of God in my wardrobe?
Biblical, practical and motivating, “The Look” challenges women (young or older), parents, and teens to discover the Truth about clothing and modesty, and to make choices based on God’s eternal perspective.
7. Dressing With Dignity:
In this ground-breaking book, Colleen Hammond challenges today’s fashions and provides you the information you need to protect yourself and your loved ones from the onslaught of tasteless, immodest clothing. Colleen Hammond shares real-life examples of how women can accentuate the grace and beauty of their femininity, and she shows that modest definitely does not mean frumpy !! DRESSING WITH DIGNITY covers it all . . . The history and forces behind the changes in fashion. How to talk to teenagers about the privilege of femininity so they will want to dress with dignity. How to awaken chivalry in men and be treated with respect. How to regain and teach the lost charm of interior and exterior femininity! How to dress in an attractive, dignified, classy manner! Specific documents about manners of dress from the Magisterium, the Popes and the Saints. Comprehensive guidelines for choosing tasteful attire. Resources on where to find beautiful, modest clothing. And much, much more!
8. Your Clothes Say it For You:
From the title you will notice that this book deals with a very controversial subject. Women don’t really like to be told what to wear. However, some women do earnestly desire to please God. They would do what God wants them to do about their appearance. God does have a standard for your appearance. For those women who are ready to find out what it is, this book was written.
9. Feminine Appeal:
You hold in your hands a guide to spiritual maturity and an opportunity to embrace God’s plan for you as a woman, a wife, a mentor, and a mother. In this book of instruction for women of all ages, Carolyn Mahaney explores seven virtues from Titus 2 that have transformed her life and the lives of countless other women. Learn how to live with true feminine appeal and become a woman who lives for God and helps others to do the same.
10. True Beauty:
Whether it’s age-defying makeup or the latest diet fad, our culture continually tells women that beauty consists of flawless skin and a supermodel figure.
In True Beauty, Carolyn Mahaney and her daughter Nicole Whitacre direct us to the truth of God’s Word, where we encounter an entirely different—and refreshingly liberating—standard of beauty.
Offering a path to freedom from the false idols that society, the Devil, and our sinful hearts so often create, this encouraging book will help you exchange the temporary glamour of pop culture for the unfading beauty of godliness.
Includes a discussion guide.
11. The Beauty of Modesty:Cultivating Virtue in the face of a Vulgar Culture:
A look at our cultural preferences today of showing as much skin as possible transposed against the choice to be modest and the values of the choice.
12. Christian Modesty:
Another quality eBook from Chapel Library. God’s Word has much to say about the way we dress. This book examines relevant portions of Scripture and investigates a little fashion history in order to present the Biblical doctrine of modesty. This important and controversial subject often falls into the realm of subjective experience and speculation. An examination of fashion authorities and historians of modern culture also reveals that the fashion industry, which believes that sexual attraction equals beauty, has been hard at work convincing society to undress in public. Because of its unbiblical worldview, the fashion industry persistently justifies the exposure and the sensualizing of the human body, a trend that many undiscerning Christians have unfortunately adopted. Christian Modesty is an urgent call to the churches of Jesus Christ to study this matter carefully and to practice a modesty that brings glory to our Holy Redeemer and gives a powerful testimony of purity within our decadent society.
For much of modern American culture, modesty is just a quaint idea carried over from our Puritan and Victorian past that can be easily discarded without significant cultural and spiritual consequences. In this small but significant work on modesty, Steve Pixler argues that this idea is terribly wrong, and that immodesty has a profound spiritual, psychological and physical impact on personal, familial and social well-being. Though most works on modesty tend to address the subject from the standpoint of detailed standards of dress and behavior, this book approaches modesty more from the standpoint of a “philosophy of modesty” that attempts to show the reason why standards of modesty are so fundamentally important. Though no attempt is made to answer every pressing question in the essential discussion on modesty, hopefully, at least, these few chapters can help get the conversation started.
14. Modesty: A Deeper Understanding:
This booklet conveys the Biblical basis for Modesty among Christian people. In a day of immodesty, lust, fornication and adultery, this message will give the answer to why God demands modesty for his people. Most books on the subject tell you the what of modesty, but this booklet tells you the why. Chapters such as: THE BIBLE DISCOURAGES INTIMATE RELATIONS DURING TIMES OF PRAYER AND SANCTIFICATION, will bring a whole new meaning to the term modesty. You will not read anything like this book available today. Well worth this small price! Every Christian, especially the women, need to read this book.
15. Set Apart Femininity:
Leslie Ludy, author of Authentic Beauty and the bestselling When God Writes Your Love Story, reveals how a young woman’s pursuit of acceptance and sameness directly counters her true purpose—to be set apart by her love for God and God’s love for her.
This empowering message filled with inspiring stories, personal illustrations, and a foundation of God’s Word to awaken young women to sacred femininity and a life infused with meaning. Each chapter encourages readers to release worldly standards and set their sights on a more worthy pursuit as they:
surrender to God’s love and wholeness
embrace the real blueprint for beauty
enjoy spectacular purpose
captivate the masculine heart
cultivate spiritual strength
This journey will spark a desire in every woman to leave the fairy tale of the masses behind and walk toward the unique beauty, love, and dreams God has for her.
I hope you enjoyed the book list and found something you want to read.
Here is what I wore to worship. I might have read a book or two while wearing this outfit..lol.
This dress is so comfortable and the best news is I found it on sale!
Dress: Christopher & Banks! I found it on sale for get this—$8.00!!!!
Sweater: Bought last year on clearance at Christopher & Banks
Shoes: Bought at Macy’s on clearance and combined with another coupon!!! YAY! I love them!!!
The post Modest Monday: Ultimate Modesty Booklist and What I wore :) appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.
Brian’s actual birthday was at the end of a long week of being sick and staying home from school. We ended up postponing his party until the following weekend. On his actual birthday we took it easy and started the day with birthday pancakes.
We then had a relaxing day of cuddling and watching movies until daddy got home from work. We celebrated with a cookie cake since chocolate chip cookies are one of Brian’s favorite things. He adored the train!!
Brian has been watching a lot of “Curious George” episodes, so I thought it would be the perfect theme for his birthday party. As per my usual routine, I started pinning away on Pinterest to get ideas for his party. Of course if I actually made all the ideas I pinned, I may be ready for his party a year from now. Ha!
I started with a cheap idea for a backdrop using only dollar store tablecloths and red duct tape. I got the idea from this website: http://partiesforpennies.com/2012/02/curious-about-a-curious-george-party/
I thought tissue paper flowers would be cheap and fun. I also made jungle vines out of paper grocery bags. Well actually Morgan made them for me while I was working on Brian’s cake. It was nice of him to contribute a little to the decorating. Ha!
What’s a Curious George party without a cute paper plate and paper cup wrapped in electrical tape to represent the Man in the Yellow Hat? I saw this idea all over Pinterest. Cute and easy!
I took Molly to a Frozen birthday party recently and the hostess gave all of the children a book. What a great idea!! So I bought all the kids a Curious George book and my friend, Cariann, found Curious George coloring books at the dollar store. I had raffia left from a previous project and Cariann made the labels for me. I then wrapped it up and was pleased with the way they turned out.
I bought this fun hide-away on a yard sale site a few years ago and we had it packed away from our recent move. I decided it would be perfect to put it up in the corner for Brian’s party. I’ve left it up and put his beanbag in it as a little place to get away and relax.
There was a sale at Michael’s on scrapbooking paper and I grabbed the three party colors. Again Cariann helped me with the letters and Curious George.
Cariann helped make all of the food labels too. Cariann ROCKS!!!
Then there was this cute idea with the monkey juice: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/390194755187819885/
The Curious George pinata that I ordered off of Amazon…..We forgot about it during the party. Bummer!!!
Cariann’s son, Aidan, is absolutely adored by my daughter, Molly. She was THRILLED to see him at the party!!!
The best part of the entire party was that not only were our neighbors, family and friends at the birthday party, but Brian’s friends from school came to help him celebrate as well!
I decided to try something new for Brian’s birthday cake, so I tried my hand at a spiral cake. I learned a lot and my next spiral will be better now that I’ve worked out all the kinks. Even though we had a Curious George birthday, I didn’t want to forget about Brian’s favorite thing, trains! I decided to look for cake toppers and I was pleasantly surprised to find Curious George riding a train on Amazon. I knew we HAD to have it for Brian’s cake!!
Brian adored his cake so much that I let him play with it after everyone got a piece. He was beyond excited!!!
Thank you to everyone that helped us celebrate Bri’s 8th birthday!
**** Permission was given from all parents to put their children’s pictures in this post. ****
I am sure you don't remember me. I am one of the countless people you have encountered in your day that you have not given a second thought to. That is ok. I wouldn't expect you to remember those people who's day you have made worse because you didn't have one ounce of decency towards your fellow human beings. Its ok, I get it. Most of us get it, the world moves at a slow pace than you do, and you being the most important person to ever live, we must somehow must step aside and let you do your thing.
But here is the trick with that way of thinking, it well sucks. I am going to blow your mind here.You are not the only person on this planet that has places to go and things to get done. Let that sink in a little bit.
So when you are the person that calls the bus company to complain about a school bus taking up too much of your time, because you are running late or that you want to get home, this is what happens. That bus now has find another way to drop the kids that it's transporting back and forth to school. Sometimes the route they have to take is the safest to get the kids on and off the bus. But little did you know that the bus you called to complain about is a bus that is carrying special needs children and that maybe, just maybe the route they were taking was the safest for both parent and child to get on and off the bus. So now, that parent and that child have to get on a bus on one of the busiest streets where most people don't pay much attention the bright yellow bus with flashing lights. Getting stuck behind a school bus slows you down. But think about this, if this was your child or someone you loved, getting on and off a bus, won't you want them to be safe?
So when you were so quick to complain about one school bus, I bet you didn't even stop to think why this bus had the route it did. I don't expect you to understand. But let me tell you why this bothers me. I have a child that bolts. He is autistic. And if there was ever a chance that he got out of my grasp and bolted into the street in front of the bus and into the traffic that doesn't pay attention, then what happens? And who is at fault? Not you. Not the person who didn't care enough about the safety of the children on that bus, as it inconvenienced you for all of five minutes if that. And I am sure you are the type of person that curses and swears when you get stuck behind the bus or the person who thinks its ok to not stop when the bus is flashing it's lights.
So I hope that one day, if you have children or children in your life, that you love as fiercely as I do my children that you hope to god they make it safely back and forth to school. Whether or not they take the bus. As your complaint about my son's bus inconveniencing you on your daily drive, because you are impatient and can't wait for a child to get off a bus safely, shows me just what kind of person you are. One that needs to slow down and be considerate to those who are around you. And then maybe, when the tables are turned and we have to wait for you, you just might get a dose of an impatient person. Good luck with that.
Mother of a Bus Rider.
We recently moved to a bigger house. One of the reasons we did this was so that my son could have more room for his sensory equipment. We wanted to make him an entire sensory room filled with everything to fit his needs. I know there are other parents of sensory children out there and I wanted to make it as easy as possible for you to know how to build your own sensory room!
5 Things to Put in Your Sensory room:
1. Play Tunnel
One of the very first things we purchased for my son was a play tunnel. His occupational therpaist had been using it a lot in therapy and I happened to see it when we were out and about shopping and just knew I had to get it for him. What I love about it, is that it flattens for storage so that it’s not always taking up a lot of room. You can purchase one on Amazon: Find Me Tunnel- $23.40 | Hide & Seek Tunnel- $19.99
2. Rocking Chair
A lot of sensory or autistic kids love to rock back and forth, let them feel safe and sound in their very own kid’s rocking chair! We got ours at a kid’s consignment store, but you can also purchase one on Amazon: Children’s Rocking Chair- $56.80.
3. Sit ‘n Spin
A sit and spin is a great toy for the kids who just love to spin in circles. They can sit on it and make themselves go round and round and round… I get dizzy just thinking about it! Purchase one: Sit ‘n Spin- $24.99.
4. Therapy/Exercise Ball
There are lots of sensory things you can do with an exercise ball. My son has been doing these for years and we still keep an exercise ball in our sensory room for him to bounce on and play with. Here are a just a few things you can do for sensory input:
- Give squishes with therapy ball
- Rolling on stomach on top of ball
- Bounces up and down while seated on ball
Purchase one at your local fitness store or here: Body Fitness Ball – $25.10
5. Play Tent/Hut
This has been great for my son, because he likes dark quiet places. He used to sit in the closet in the dark for what seemed like forever and getting a tent so that he had his own quiet, covered place has been helpful and made it special for him. There are several different types of tents or play huts you can get: Crawl N Play- $24.97 | My Little Tent- $31.99 | Pacific Play Tent- $24.97.
6. Crash Pad
I never even thought about having a crash pad in my own home until my son’s therapist said something. Ours is homemade with a twin size air mattress. It was stuffed with foam balls that that a company donated to our therapy place and a person associated with them sewed in a zipper. You can purchase one online, but I highly recommend you make a homemade one or find someone who can because it’s a lot cheaper! Find ideas for a homemade sensory crash pad HERE. Purchase one: Crash Pad- $139.99.
The trampoline is a great way for your sensory child to get input and for any kid to get the wiggle-worms out! My son will go and jump when he needs it or sometimes if I can see he is having trouble I will tell him to go jump 10 times. He likes it when we count his jumps! The one pictured is the one we bought. We love it and it’s been perfect for my son’s needs. Mini Trampoline – $79.99
8. Platform Swing
My son was introduced to the platform swing from day one in therapy. Now that we are in a bigger home we are planning on getting this swing so that he can use it at home. I have seen occupational therapists use this swing for so much, including vestibular orientation, linear acceleration, balance reactions and motor planning. My son also loves to spin and spin on it. I hear you can make them, but you can also search online for one to purchase.
9. Hammock Swing
I have seen several different names for this swing, but really they are all the same. These are perfect for sensory kids because it is enclosed and squishes you. Perfect for quiet time or for sensory input. My son would spend all day in one if he could. Purchase one here: Ikea Hammock Swing – $48.95.
Here is my son using some of his equipment in his very own sensory room!
Did I miss anything? What do YOU have in your sensory room?
* Some of this content may contain affiliate links. *
If you’re keeping track, you’ll notice that a traditional marathon is 26.2 miles…so what’s up with the marathon going on for 27 days? The math doesn’t add up! Well, Miracle Marathon added a special touch by adding one more mile “for the kids.”
I sincerely hope you will donate to my Miracle Marathon journey and/or join my team. I’d love to have you move along with me! Any money collected through my page will benefit the Kansas University Pediatrics Medical Center in Kansas City. I have a personal goal of $270, which is $10 per mile/day, and a team goal of $230. Will you help me raise $500 to help kids in Children’s Miracle Hospitals? Even “sponsoring” one day for $10 would be a big help. I’ve started us off by “sponsoring” the first day! Thanks in advance, guys!
This post is NOT sponsored. Just thought I’d put that out there, since it is a touch pitchy.
“You know what I wanted when I was a kid? This. I am living it. But I am not happy. How come I feel this way?” Quote by Allyson in “Mom’s Night Out.”
Being a mom isn’t easy. There are days that are just downright hard. There are some days we wonder who is raising who – the adults raising the kids, or the kids raising the adults. Prior to having children, I lacked patience. Okay, I’m going easy on myself. Actually, I had not one iota of patience. When my oldest was almost a year old, I remember talking to my sister-in-law after having a pretty rough day. I told her about my day and that I had been praying for patience. She jokingly responded with, “Don’t you know you never pray for patience?” It’s difficult to put the conversation into context, but the laughter was what I needed. On a side note, I have never stopped praying for patience. It’s almost as if the more I pray for patience, the more patience God blesses me with. However, the more I pray for patience, it seems the more my patience is tested. Mommas, the truth is we are tested each day while raising our blessings.
Mom’s Night out originally started as a book written by Tricia Goyer. If you haven’t read the book here is what amazon says about it.
Moms’ Night Out is a novelization of the hilarious family comedy that celebrates real family life—where everything can go wrong and still turn out all right.
All Allyson and her friends want is a peaceful, grown-up evening of dinner and conversation . . . a long-needed moms’ night out. But in order to enjoy high heels, adult conversation and food not served in a bag, they need their husbands to watch the kids for a few hours—what could go wrong?
Chronicling one night out gone awry, three harried moms, their husbands, a sister-in-law with a misplaced baby, a tattoo parlor owner, a motorcycle gang, and a bewildered cabbie all learn to embrace the beautiful mess called parenting. This book spotlights the unfulfilled expectations and serial self-doubts many moms feel . . . then reassures us that the key is raising kids in a loving home. Mom’s Night Out is an endearing, true-to-life comedy.
Before “Mom’s Night Out” came to the big screen, I was asked to attend a pre-screening of the movie. My husband took off work early so he could come home and be with the boys. This allowed myself and my sweet friend Rhiannon to attend the showing together! We literally got a Mom’s Night Out! Rhiannon and I enjoyed sweet fellowship, talking about our families, things we were struggling with, and just being an encouragement to each other. I posted a mini-review with pictures of our special Mom’s Night Out pre-screening HERE. We both related to the movie in so many ways. While this movie is fictional, I believe it is an autobiography of many of our lives. I remember scenes in the movie that made me wonder if my life was being spied upon…lol.
Since attending the pre-screening of “Mom’s Night Out,” I have watched this spectacular movie three additional times. I attended the opening weekend with some other wonderful friends and I also took my mom to watch it in theaters on Mother’s Day. The third time I watched this movie was when I was asked to review the DVD. I popped some popcorn, curled up with my boys on the couch and made a movie night out of it. This movie is so good that I’m ready to watch it again!
Although this movie is fictional, I related to it from the opening scenes. I will not ruin the movie by giving spoiler alerts, but I will tell you that Allyson is a mom and a blogger. She is a blogger! I love that this movie is faith-based. This year, faith-based movies are taking Hollywood by storm and showing that movies with class, faith, morals, modest apparel and clean language can be blockbuster hits, but are important to us. Based off the box office sales, there is a demand for more faith-based movies. I am so grateful for the producers. actors, writers, and all who work to make faith-based movies possible. I want to share a quote I read on Amazon by an atheist about “Mom’s Night Out” Movie, which really says ALOT about the movie!!!
This is delightful comedy that centers around stressed out super-mom Allyson (Sarah Drew). She conspires with two other stressed out mom’s to have a “mom’s night out” and to let Sean (Sean Astin) mind the kids along with his single buddy friend Kevin (Kevin Downes). The other two members of the threesome include Sondra (Patricia Heaton), the preacher’s wife and Izzy (Faith based film cutie Logan White).
We discover that the ability to walk in heels is not like riding a bike. Both the women and the men are out of their element leading to an over-the-top comic adventure. While the situation approaches unrealistic, the one liners had me in stitches. The plot is cliché and formulaic, but works with the characters and on-screen chemistry.
The film has a faith-based message and utilizes stars that have been strictly in faith-based films. With the help of a few headliners to carry the film, plus a decent script that wasn’t bogged down with a faith message, this film was delightful, even to this old atheist cynic.
Trace Adkins played a philosophical biker who tells Allyson and us, after a night of hell, what she apparently needed to know to enjoy life.
Parental Guide: No f-bombs, sex, or nudity. Quote by: The Movie Guy
Movies like “Mom’s Night Out” are appreciated by Christians who want to attend the movie theaters, but do not want to listen to or watch some of the filth in those secular movies. However, isn’t there a bigger plan? These faith-based films are seizing the opportunity to reach folks, such as The Movie Guy, with the gospel. Seeds are being planted and watered through the stories and the plots of these movies. Jesus tells us to Go into ALL the world and preach the gospel. That doesn’t just stop with our entertainment. I cannot say enough about “Mom’s Night Out.” The fact that I’ve paid to watch this movie three times says a lot about my feelings towards this movie. Allow me to add that it was worth every penny! If you haven’t watched “Mom’s Night Out,” I encourage you to purchase the DVD! This is definitely a movie you will want to watch over and again.
Men, I’m speaking to you, too. You may be thinking to yourself that you will not enjoy it. You’re probably thinking that because of the title, right? Seriously, who wants to watch a movie about Mom’s leaving the house to go out with other Mom’s while the Dad’s must figure out how to manage the household while she’s gone. My oldest (who happens to be my review sidekick) thought the same thing when I told him the title…LOL. (He is so much like his Dad). Well, needless to say, but he loved it. The movie has action scenes that will hold your interest. My DVD copy is heading overseas to my husband who is away with the Army. He will finally get a chance to watch it, then send it back so I can watch it again! HA! I give this movie a 100!! I simply cannot do just a 5!!
You can get your movie at the following link:
It is my pleasure to offer a giveaway sponsored by Propeller Entertainment! Click below to enter. If you are not already subscribed to the blog you will need to do that before entering. Thanks so much!
Wow here we are again. For the 12th time since 2006 we meet again. Though I have to say our meetings are not those of the typical kind. Because for the 12th time it’s not my husband that you are taking from me (Though you have before) Once again it’s time to support someone whom you’ve chosen to take far from their family. Regardless of what you throw at them they will know that they are cared for, and appreciated by another grateful American and that their sacrifice is not forgotten. Because the honest truth is, it could very well be my husband and I would hope that someone would do the same for him.
So dear deployment bring it on.
I’m a proud US Army Wife. I’ve been married to my husband for 10 years and we have an amazing 10 year old son. I began adopting service members in 2006 via the non-profit Soldiers’ Angels as a volunteer and am now the Deployed Program Manager for the organization. When someone told me that mail didn’t matter to our troops I commited to writing 4,000 letters in 2013 which I surpassed by sending 6,345. I’m just a normal everyday person. I love making new friends and helping others learn about ways that they can support our troops and veterans
Ladies and gentlemen, mark your calendars! On Friday, September 12, the release of “Dolphin Tale 2” in conjunction with HomeSchool Movie Day is offering a showing of this movie to homeschoolers during the noon time slot in theaters all across the country! You have the opportunity to take your kids to see a wonderful and educational movie!!! So write it down, add it to your calendars, put a reminder in your smart phones or electronic device to remind you to head to the theaters. Before you do that, I have a wonderful resource I want to introduce you to.
I, personally, am a stickler on the kids reading the books prior to watching the movies. For example, before I let my oldest watch Swiss Family Robinson or Narnia, he had to read the books first. The same goes for my younger two as they grow older. My oldest has witnessed first hand how so much is left out of the movie as compared to the books. Although he might complain at times, he usually thanks me later. The torture home school kids go through, right? LOL! When I heard about the release of “Dolphin Tale 2,” I soon learned about a curriculum that goes with the movie. Needless to say, this momma was so excited!!!
The boys and I navigated through the learning videos, which were very well done. The videos are education and exciting enough to challenge my oldest, yet short just the right length to keep my younger two from losing interest. I have shared with you all before about my youngest son’s obsession with all things fish. Hence, the nickname he was given – Nemo. As soon as I showed him the cover to the learning videos, he was immediately interested…LOL! My middle son is a HUGE fan of all things turtle. Hence, the nickname given to him – Turtle. Once he saw Sea Turtles in the videos, he became so excited! My oldest son loves to read about different topics, but it seems his passion is science. Hence, the nickname he was given – Bookworm. He is infatuated with science so much that he will submerge himself in anything science related. All three of my boys have thoroughly enjoyed these learning videos. Having seen the original “Dolphin Tale,” the boys were excited when I told them of the “Dolphin Tale 2″ movie. However, the Dolphin Tale 2 Curriculum has furthered their excitement. Also, as an added incentive, it gives them background knowledge prior to watching the movie.
After we watched the videos, I printed out all the PDF files for the written curriculum. WOW!! Can I say WOW again? The writers of the curriculum really outdid themselves!!! Did I mention that this curriculum is FREE?!?! Honestly, a curriculum this good and this in-depth could easily be sold. I would have gladly paid for, but I am also glad I didn’t have to. What a blessing!!! Do you participate in Classical Conversations? Even if you do not, the Classical Conversations PDF is simply amazing. This is an invaluable resource for all of us.
Here is what the Classical Conversations PDF includes:
- Physical Science
- Get involved this section is wonderful and discusses career choices
- A section For Parents-has worksheets for handwriting, more in-depth discussions for parents to look over, and a HUGE list of resources for more information.
There are 5 education videos, each with a different topic plus an introduction video and a PDF file for each video. Topics covered in the videos and PDF are:
- Get to Know Dolphins: Anatomy and Physical Science
- A Day in the Life of Dolphins
- Dolphins in the Oceans
- Aquarium Life
- Dolphins and Us
When I was asked to review the curriculum, knowing that it was going to be offered for free, I expected just a few generic pages. To my surprise, I was wrong. In fact, I was nowhere near being right…lol. The Classical Conversation booklet in itself is 77 pages! Notice I only listed the Classical Conversation piece and not the rest of the curriculum. There is no evolutionary content covered in any of the curriculum for those who like to avoid that subject. In case you’re worried about the younger children, they will have access to coloring pages as well as plenty of other content they will enjoy. My youngest, aged 5, sat with me while I was putting the printouts together and kept saying, “Oh, Mommy I want to do that! Can I do that one? I want to read THAT!” While a 5-year-old may not comprehend certain vocabulary words, or may be disinterested in content he or she doesn’t understand, this curriculum is designed to cover a wide range of ages and learning styles! Don’t discount younger ones on vocabulary either. Sometimes I think my youngest is bored and not paying attention when I am working with the older two, but later he says and comprehends the words we covered. So what are you waiting for? Head over and get your free curriculum for Dolphin Take 2 today!!! I give it a 6/5 simply because it blew my mind!
To get access to Dolphin Tale 2 FREE curriculum click HERE.
Also, if your interested, I have a booklist of Dolphin books found HERE that you can add to your studies!
Boys will be boys........
There is an absolutely GORGEOUS sunflower field in Lawrence, KS, but that is over an hour and a half away, so I couldn’t justify making the trip with the boys this weekend. I read about a smaller field in Manhattan, KS though, that was only about 20ish minutes away, so I decided to check it out today after The Munchkin got home from school.
The Bean was totally into it. He thought it was so cool to stand among such big flowers. He had fun examining them, and petting them, (ha) and was promptly stopped when he started pulling off the petals.
The Munchkin was NOT into it. At all. He was tired from school, and probably hungry. It was about 5:30 by the time we got there, but maybe closer to 6 because I didn’t know where to park. I didn’t get one smile out of him. Seriously, I couldn’t even work my magic in Photoshop. That NEVER happens! The wind was doing weird things to his hair, too. It’s like everything was against me.
I’m not 100% sure on this, but we may have trespassed a little to get these photos. I found out about this field from a posting on facebook, and expected to be able to pull off on the side of the road and snap some pics. Except, when I got there, all of the road-side flowers had a fence around them. I tried to go to the back of the field, and found that there was a University of Kansas Research Farm or something behind it, but the driveways for that place had a fence around the flowers too. Puzzling.
I tried googling to see if I could get any answers, but found nothing. I had seen a house right next to the flowers, but I was hoping for another way to reach them. I searched for any kind of human life on the research farm, but since it was so late, it was a ghost town. Eventually, I gave up on asking and cautiously drove onto the driveway. I didn’t see anyone home, or anyone peeking out at least, so I quickly got the boys out of the van, and snapped these photos.
Do you know what I spy in the above photo? A little smile on The Munchkin. That was the only smile I saw this trip.
I actually tried really hard to get some pictures of The Munchkin that were usable. After I got enough of The Bean, I put him back into the van, and begged The Munchkin to smile, just once. He wouldn’t do it. He was just yelling, and he wanted to stand by the tree, and he didn’t want me to take pictures, and he wanted to go into the van… and eventually I gave up. SIGH.
I quickly wrote a little thank you note to the family for letting us take pictures in their flowers, stuck it in their mailbox, and we were on our way. I’d say that we’d try again another day, but I really want to know if what we did was ok first!
On Friday Dolphin Tale 2 comes out in theaters. I will be doing a full review of the curriculum that goes along with it this week, however I thought in the meantime you would like a book list to go along with it.
Also here is the link to Dolphin Tale so you can check it out too!
Happy Studying! My link for curriculum will be up SOON! So stay tuned. If you haven’t yet, subscribe to the blog. That keeps you from missing any of the posts!
As you can imagine, summer 13 was challenging. Jake was home every day with Lily, and try as we might to get him involved in programs so that he could have a structured day like his school year....well, that wasn't meant to be. I am sure many of you experience similar summers. School is out, and with it, a large chunk of the structured day goes with it. This has been an issue for us every year since Jake was diagnosed, and Summer 13 was no exception. I addition to that, things were very busy for me professionally at the time. It was all I could do to keep moving forward. The next thing I knew, it was already the holidays, and I hadn't written. By that time, I found out we would be moving in the summer of 2014 - and we have - to Patrick AFB, which is near Melbourne, FL. We were very excited about the move.
You can also see that the title of the Blog has changed, from Captain Dad to Major Dad - I promoted to the rank of Major effective 1 March 2014. That was a very happy day for the family....Jake, Max, Miriam and Lily all were involved in the ceremony as well as my parents. For a JAG, Captain comes very quickly, Major feels like it takes forever, so it was nice to finally reach that career milestone.
We also had some other fun activities this year. Growing up, I was an avid skier, and annual family ski trips were something my brother and I always looked forward to. With Jake's diagnosis, I wondered if I would ever get to experience that again. My brother had also been trying to get me to come ski with him at Mammoth in California for several years. I always begged off, because it wouldn't be fair to leave Lily with all three kids so I could go ski. This past year, my brother finally wised up. When he approached me with a ski trip idea, he pitched a different deal. He had done his homework and found out that Mammoth has an adaptive program (Disabled Sports Eastern Sierra), which works well with kids on the spectrum. He then went to my Dad and got my father to agree to pay for Jake's lessons and the condo. Basically, I was on the hook for flights, and the rest would be taken care of. So Jake and I went, and it was a marvelous experience. I cannot say enough positive things about DSES. They had 2-3 instructors with Jake at all time, and he took right to being on the slopes. After that trip, we talked about taking our own family trip next year. More on this in subsequent posts.
By the time I had gotten back and promoted, we were knee deep in trying to get through EFMP clearance. I tried to follow my own advice and get ahead of the curve, but as anyone who has gone through it knows, EFMP clearance is a pain. The next thing you know, we were en route to FL, arriving at the end of June. Then the challenge was getting Jake into therapy as soon as possible. I found a day camp for the twins for July, so at least they had some activity. It was at that point that I made an error. I had already gotten Jake on the waiting list at the elite clinic in the area, and instead of getting him into a stop gap therapy while we waited on this waitlist, we sat back hoping the phone would ring (he was at the top of the list). Well the phone didn't ring all summer, and this presented an additional challenge for Lily. I've previously written that you hope for the best and prepare for the worst, and in this case, I failed to follow my own advice. In the meantime, I was adjusting to a new job with new responsibilities. It was a lot for the family to deal with. I think we are through the worst of it, with Jake being back in school, the twins having started kindergarten, the house being unpacked, we finally have a routine....for now.
I know this is a helter skelter post, but that is the thumbnail version of the last year. Now that I am writing again, there will be more regular posts (maybe not every week, but more regular). I've tried to always convey a message of hope, and as I watch my son on the couch as I type, I still have that hope, but have had some doubt too. I look forward raising awareness to the issues that we as parents of a child on the spectrum face.
Mr. Rice is just one of many superstars that have gotten away with something that is illegal. Since the dawn of time, domestic violence has been looked upon as something that can be swept under the rug, ignored like the make up that covers the bruises. But this is now something that even the NFL and other organizations cannot ignore.
As hard as it was for me, as a survivor of Domestic Violence, to sit and watch a man in a very small space, knock out his woman, like a neanderthal, failing at the attempt to drag his woman back to his cave, I can't even fathom what its like for her. Janay Rice, now has to sit back and see all the comments that condemn her because that video pretty much killed her husband's career. She is now the ending joke to asshat reporters on FOX news, who have no idea what its like to be abused by their spouse. But the sad reality of it is this, there are millions of people out there who are abused by their spouses, every single day that are sitting in their own misery watching this play out. And like a shitty play by play that gets repeated, most of us who did manage to find the courage to walk away, are sitting here, know exactly why Janay Rice went ahead and married him anyway.
I am not going to sugar coat things or make domestic violence look even remotely pretty. Because its not. It is an ugly, rage-ful, controlling aspect of certain human beings that need to feel better about themselves. And for us people that find their way into their web, it is a struggle to get out of. Not only are you griped with the fear of pissing this person off, but you have absolutely no self worth to say to yourself that you deserve better. This person has beaten you down both emotionally and physically. To the point where you start believe them, when they tell you that you deserve nothing better except what they are offering. They break you, until you are nothing but the shell they can control. So when you sit there and ask "Well why don't they leave?" Its not as easy as getting up and walking out that front door. You first have to find within yourself the courage to do so. You have to find that part of you that still makes you, you. But when you find that, whether it be instantaneous or if it takes awhile, you then can start realizing that you are worth more than just someone's control thing.
For all the Janay Rices out there, You are not alone. Not for one second. There are places you can go. There are numbers you can call 1-800-799-7233 | 1-800-787-3224 ( National Domestic Violence Hotline)that will help you and keep you safe. It isn't going to easy and it is going to suck a whole lot of shit. But know that there are people out there that will be there to catch you if you fall.
I needed to write about this. Domestic Violence is never ok. Not Ever. It is never, ever ok to even joke about it. And for those who seem to feel some sense of sympathy for Mr. Rice, I want you really take a long hard look at the man you seem to want to support. The man that almost got away with beating the shit out of his wife. Eventually, it will all come back to haunt you.
As for the NFL and other big organizations, the fact that you are now just making a stand about this, is truly sad. Because if that video hadn't shed some light on the misogynist game you all play, I am willing to bet that you wouldn't have players to play your game.
Over the weekend, my daughter had another hospital stay. Thankfully, it wasn’t anything serious and just for observation, but I realized something: Elizabeth has been in the hospital for a total of 5 weeks in the short 9 months since she’s been born. The hospitalizations have been in three different hospitals in two different states, for a total of 6 different times.
In this time I have learned A LOT. Wiith the most recent hospital stay I realized that I needed to write a blog post to help other moms who may have a child in the hospital currently or in the future. No one expects to have a child with complicated medical needs and no mom hopes that her child will have to spend a lot of time in the hospital, but if you do it’s best to be ready!
19 tips for preparing for your child’s hospital stay and what others can do to help:
1. Be prepared.
If you know ahead of time that your child may be admitted there are some ways you can be prepared. There have been several times where we had a specialist appointment or a procedure done, and didn’t know we were going to be admitted, but from experience I knew to bring along things just in case. Even if you are 100% sure they won’t be admitted it’s great to have a bag in the car for just in case!
How to prepare:
- Pack a bag: Include several day’s worth of comfortable clothes for yourself and your child. Include toiletries and maybe even a roll of toilet paper (the hospital toilet paper is awful). Always include a book, laptop, or something for you to do. Throw in a few toys for your child as well.
- Bring copies of your child’s paperwork. Since both of my children have special needs I have learned to just have a folder with copies of everything in them. What to bring: records, names, numbers, and addresses of all doctors and specialists, lists of procedures and tests that have already been done, evaluations, lists of current medication, and any other paperwork that may help or obtain to your child.
- Bring Special Supplies. My daughter is on a feeding tube, and we were told after her surgery that if we were ever admitted we needed to bring all her tube supplies because not all hospitals have the right ones that she may need. A good idea is to have an extra bag with all of your child’s supplies to carry with you at all times. For example, we always have extra feeding bags, syringes, tube extensions, her feeding pump and backpack, and a water bottle for flushing out her tube.
2. Know the Hospital Rules.
Every hospital is different, but every hospital has their rules. Be mindful of hospital quiet hours and know when visiting hours start and end. If you are sharing a room with another patient, be courteous of them. If you are not sure what the rules are, ask your nurse or social worker.
3. Take Advantage of the Hospital’s Supplies and Resources.
The hospital will give you a lot of things for your stay. Diapers, wipes, and bath toiletries if you have a baby as, syringes, thermometers, and more. Take advantage of this! Don’t use your own supplies if you don’t have to.
Anything that goes into the hospital room will be thrown away so take it if it can be used again! We have been able to save some money from some of our hospital stays because of all the extra diapers, wipes, thermometers, and feeding supplies the hospital has given us. It’s nice to take them home and have extra!
Make sure to take advantage of the hospital’s parent room which usually includes paper products for food, use of the refrigerator, free coffee and ice water. Ask if there is a playroom for the kids. Many times they can bring you toys, games or dvds for your child to play with or you can ask your nurse if your child is allowed to go play down in the playroom.
4. Know Your Rights.
Do you know your hospital rights? You are allowed to ask questions, you are allowed to ask for a different nurse if you don’t like the one you have, and you have a right to speak with patient advocacy if something has happened during your stay that was not right.
We have experienced all of these including asking for a nurse switch several times. Nurse shifts are 12 hours and if you have a reason not to like your nurse you really don’t want to have her taking care of your child for half a day. At one hospital we had to ask to speak with patient advocacy because of several severe mess ups. We were not happy, but letting the appropriate people know can do a lot of good.
5. Ask to Speak with a Social Worker and/or a Chaplain.
Social workers are your advocates. They can help with questions, discounts, family events, awareness, and more! The chaplain is there if you need someone to talk/vent to or need prayer. Both of these people are there at your disposal, they want to help.
6. Speak Up, Ask Questions, Advocate!
This is your child. Don’t be afraid to speak up if you don’t like something or ask questions if you don’t understand. I would often question the doctors and nurses if I didn’t understand or if I thought something was being done wrong. You are your child’s advocate, they are depending on you to get them the best care possible.
7. Take Advantage of Breaks and Downtime.
It’s so hard to accept help or to want to leave the room when your child is there and needing you. It can also be hard to leave the room for a moment knowing you might miss your chance to see a doctor or specialist and to question them. The first time I was in the hospital with my daughter I didn’t leave the room for two full days. I realized after that it was okay to take advantage of small breaks, I needed it.
You can walk around the halls, go to the parent’s room, go outside for fresh air and more. If you’re alone, ask a nurse to sit with your child for a few minutes. Some hospitals have volunteers that are there just to sit and play with your child so that you can get a break. Take advantage of this and ask your nurse if this is available.
If friends and family want to help, have them take turns staying with your child so that you can shower, eat, and get a break. Remember: if you don’t take care of yourself, then who will take care of your child?
8. Use Hospital Discounts & Special Housing Options.
A lot of places will give a hospital discount if you have a child in the hospital, even the hospital will give you a discount! Make sure you ask for wristbands that show you are a parent of a child in the hospital to get a discount in the hospital cafeteria, bookstore, and at local hotels.
Keep in mind that some hospitals have special housing options at a discounted price for parents with a child in the hospital. Also, check out the Ronald McDonald House if you are far from home and need a place to stay. They are a wonderful organization that provide beautiful facilities and food during your child’s hospital stay.
11 Tips For Your Child’s Hospital Stay from Other Parents:
- “First, it is ok to ask for a different nurse if you don’t feel comfortable with the one you have. Second, it is ok to go take a walk and get out of the room. Third, make sure you are eating and staying healthy! Fourth, bring a book or something to do so you’re not constantly staring at the clock and waiting on doctors. These are the things I learned.” – Betty
- “Meet with a social worker and take advantage of every financial assistance and service available. Even if you think you can manage, your tomorrow might not be as easy.” – Kimberly
- “Don’t be afraid to advocate for your child. If you’re not comfortable with or don’t understand the information you’ve been given, ask them to take their time and thoroughly explain what’s going on. If you feel like your child isn’t receiving proper treatment contact the patient advocate rep.” – Lindsi
- “Bring a summary of medical conditions, history, and medications and keep it at the bedside. This saves you from having to repeat yourself. Being extra copies as there are always so many people. Stock up on supplies if possible while in the hospital and bring with you special supplies that the hospital may not have. Get a gift card or credit card to use for food or coffee. Use the hospital volunteers or child life specialists to play with your child when you just need time to decompress. Find your go-to person that you trust to get info from, whether it is a nurse, doctor or resident and bring them coffee. Update only one family member and let them update everyone else.” – Francine
- “I always pack fresh fruit and vegetables for hospital stays. They are such a great break from vending machines and cafeteria food. I also find a good coffee place somewhere outside of the hospital. That way I have a place to get some fresh air off campus.” – Stephanie
- “Keep a notebook or use your notepad on your phone to keep track of questions for morning rounds. Keep an overnight bag packed with toiletries in between hospital stays to grab on the go so you aren’t stuck without a change of underwear, comfy pants, and toothbrush/toothpaste. Keep a steady supply of chocolate on hand to make it through the stay.” – Jennifer
- “If you are a parent that stays at the hospital 24 hours with your child, be prepared. Take books, magazines, DVDs (some hospitals are equipped with DVD players) and extra change of clothes for a shower. Make sure you stay healthy: eat. It’s okay to go get some food or take a walk. Ask as many questions as possible. It’s okay to have visitors, unless your child is in isolation. If you need to take notes, take them. This helps us remember things later. If you don’t like the nurse, request a new one.” – Bianca
- “Bring short sleeve snap up Jammies for your child or baby. They are more comfortable than hospital gowns and allow for cord management, IV access, etc.” – Shawn
- “If you feel strongly about something and you are receiving resistance, the magic phrase is, ‘May I please speak to a patient care representative?’ It gets a lot done very quickly.” – Bailey
- “Ask questions, be your child’s advocate, bring food from a store since cafeteria food is expensive, and remember: it’s okay to take a break. Bring things to do for yourself, take advantage of child life services, and bring your own soaps and toiletries for showers and everyday care.” – Stacy
- “Wear comfy clothes and ask lots of questions. You need to know what’s going on with your child, if someone says they are going to so something (i.e. Run tests), follow up and make sure they did or find out why they didn’t. Always always talk to your doctor, make it a top priority to know what’s going on and what’s going to go on. You will go stir crazy but that’s okay, everyone does. Go downstairs to grab a coffee and sit for a few minutes of quite time without the beeping and nurses/doctors going in and out.” – Sara
Do you know a family who is in the hospital with their child? Do you want to help? Here are some things you can do to help out this family in need!
5 Tips for Those Who Want to Help:
1. Give Gas Cards and/or Gift Cards.
Gas cards are perfect for families who are traveling back and forth from the hospital or who have to travel out-of-state for hospital care. Gift cards are good to help with meals and food while the family is in the hospital so that they don’t have eat only at the cafeteria. It was such a big help to receive both of these type of cards during the times we spent at the hospital with my daughter.
2. Bring Meals.
A great way to help is to bring meals while the family is in the hospital. It helps save them money so they don’t have to eat out and gives them a little taste of home away from home. Another way is to bring meals right after they come home from the hospital. It is stressful and exhausting at the hospital and coming home from that it can be hard to put together a meal. No matter what you do, meals are definitely appreciated during or after a hospital stay.
3. Give them a Break or Keep Them Company.
One of the best things we had during our many stays at the hospital, were the people who came to help give us a break or to just keep me company during the long days of waiting for the doctors and waiting for procedures to be done. This is one of the best and easiest ways to help!
4. Send Care Packages.
If you are far away from the family in need, you can still help! During several of our hospital stays we received care packages full of non-perishable food and snacks, baby toys, gift cards, books, and other things to do. This is a great way to send cheer from far away.
5. Order Hospital Messages or Gifts.
A lot of hospitals have a place on their website where you can send messages or purchase gifts that will be delivered to the patient’s room. This is another great way to show that you were thinking of them when you can’t be there in person.
3 Tips From Other Parents:
- “Help with parking expenses was a huge relief to us. Also having extra sitters at the hospital just so we can shower, eat, and take care of everyday things like bills, etc.” – Kimberly
- “I loved getting gift cards for gas/fast food when our son was in the NICU. It is financially draining to have to eat out and spend so much gas money driving back and forth everyday to see your child. I think that would be a good suggestion for anyone who wants to help out a family with a sick child.” – Devyn
- “I loved receiving non-hospital meals, when my friends brought it to me.” – Bianca
What tips could YOU give? Have you ever had a child in the hospital or helped a family who had a child in the hospital? I’d love to hear your story!