Showing posts from April, 2011


It has been one week today since we added a teenager to our household!  Of course things have changed a bit around here, but none for the worse and way more for him then for us!  He sure faces all of the changes like a trooper!  Like I told Ry; with any child you add or even a pet- there is an adjustment time and after you adjust you can't remember what life was like before!  We're working on it! So, what are the changes we have experienced so far with a teenager from a different country becoming part of the family?  I am doing a bit more running around right now, but that won't be forever.  A didn't come with much clothes and the things he has aren't appropriate for Michigan weather.  So we have had to go find odds and ends to fill in the gaps in his wardrobe.  We did most of it on Saturday.   I hope he didn't say yes to things just because we pulled them out!  At first he stood back and just nodded his head for everything.  Later, after we coaxed him, he beg

It Works! Wednesday - Get Rid of those Saggy Baggy Elephant Thighs!

I don’t think there is anyone that is pleased with their appearance that suffers from having cellulite. Cellulite is tissue on the skin that makes your skin look dimply or lumpy. Most of the time, women are affected by it. Cellulite appears mainly on the bum and the thighs. There are different ways a person can go about treating the cellulite and reducing anymore from showing up on their skin. Thank goodness!!  One way to reduce the the look of cellulite is by applying Defining Gel twice a day in a massaging circular motion to your affected area.  I use the gel in place of a moisterizer each day when I get out of the shower.  You will really notice a difference!!  I have also had clients say the gel helps rid them of pain in their joints or from fibromyelga. Defining Gel is an intensive skin care gel that hydrates the skin, while also firming areas such as the abdomen, back, legs, and upper arms. When used regularly, Defining Gel minimizes the appearance of skin dimples and va

So Many Blessings on Easter!

I'm a little late on the Happy Easter, but Happy Easter! What a wonderful Easter it was as I hope was all of yours was as well!  Our day was so filled with blessings! Our day started out differently as planned, but ended up really great!  We skipped church because A wasn't feeling well.  This bummed me out big time for very selfish reasons!  I wanted to introduce our new son to everyone and show him off! :)  It was good we didn't go though.  In addition to having a sore throat, I think he would have been overwhelmed and stressed out by all of the people and trying to understand everyone.   Just listening and trying to understand everyone is very tiring!  We have noticed he turns the TV up pretty loud because he is trying to hear all of the words so he can understand the programs.  He can't fill in the things he misses to make sense of it all yet.  Learning a new language is a full time job and can wipe you out!  I started reading the Easter story to him in Spanish

It's High School all over Again!

Today I took A and the two little ones to sign up for high school.  The staff were very receptive and kind which made the experience super easy!  There is a lot of paperwork and  things that I just don't understand or know about yet so that tripped me up, but the the staff just shrugged and said they would find the answers. (bless their hearts!) After the paperwork, we took a tour of the school to go over exactly where each class was.  They were pretty close together and only down two hallways so I was relieved that A wouldn't get lost. (unless he is like me and then it could possibly happen) I have to admit that I was super nervous and continue to be!  A took it all in stride, he was as calm as a cucumber while I was all nutso feeling!  He starts on Monday! I guess all of the memories of getting turned around, not being able to open my locker, (for 4 years -honestly I never could get that stupid thing open!!) finding the right bus, and feeling out of place when I first w

The First Day with a Teenager who doesn't speak my language - literally!

It is 8:15pm and even though I am fully aware that this is the honeymoon phase, things couldn't be better!  The little ones are in bed and the two older boys are outside playing basketball together.  I hear laughter and see huge smiles!  What a fantastic end to a wonderful day! The two younger kids followed A around all day!  He was like a brand new toy!  They wanted to hold his hands in the parking lot at the store and fought to sit next to him on the couch!  They absolutely ADORE him!  The first thing Jackson said as he came through the door after school was to ask where A was!  I know the novelty of having an older brother will wear off sometime, but right now it couldn't be better! A has been very considerate, has wonderful manners, and has been so helpful.  I haven't requested a thing of him and yet he carries bags, helps put on shoes, clears plates, and waits until everyone has been served before eating. I have been thrilled to be able to speak Spanish with him.

He's Here!!

I feel like I just had a baby.  Not in the pain after birth sort of way, but that complete euphoric feeling you get after you hold that precious little bundle in your arms!  I am walking on air and have been since we saw our son walk down the ramp at the airport! Yesterday was a roller coaster kind of day!  We had a scheduled flight time and I had the day planned out to the minute so dinner could be in the crock pot, the house could be cleaned, and Jackson could be picked up from school.  If you have been through any sort of foster care, adoption, government, or anything to do basically with children in general you know that things have a tendency to not go as planned!  So of course they missed their flight!  The day was quickly rearranged and they came in on a later flight.  That just meant more pacing and agonizing over nothing and everything for me! As we rode to the airport Jackson asked us if I knew what A looked like.  I told him that he probably had darker skin and hair but

It Works! Wednesday - Stop the Flashing!

If you are a woman you need to read this!  You may not be at the point in your life that you are worrying about any of this, but you know someone who is and you will get there eventually! At a certain point in life women enter a phase called menopause.  During this time women's bodies slow down their production of the hormones estrogen and progesterone and then they cease to produce them all together.  I'm sure you have all heard of menopause and men and women both cringe at the thought.  Hot flashes, mood swings, night sweats, weight gain, and memory loss are just a few fun things to look forward to! Even if you think you can suffer through the side effects do you know what else menopause brings on?  A weaker you!  What is the leading cause of death in women?   - Heart Disease.  Did you know that estrogen and progesterone keep your heart healthy? What about Osteoporosis?  Did you know that these hormones also enable your bones to absorb calcium?  So without these hormones

Today is the Day!

Around 5:00 yesterday we found out when A's flight is coming in today - nothing like waiting until the last minute!  Yesterday, you would have thought that I would have spent the entire day preparing for A's arrival, but instead I took the kids to the Children's Museum, went to a charity luncheon and got my haircut! We did spend time making a sign for A at the airport and practicing his name!  When we asked Tyce what his new brother's name is he responded that he is naming him Tyce!  We tried to explain that he already has a name and it isn't Tyce, but Tyce insisted that is what he is going to call him! 

It's a Boy!

Yes, it is a boy - a 16 year old boy!  We found out yesterday afternoon that A, who was born in Guatemala, will be coming home on Wednesday this week!!  I will officially be a mom of a teenager! We were able to talk with him over the phone yesterday -through an interpreter- which was pretty cool.  Everyone was nervous and excited, so I'm sure many of his questions weren't asked and I have a ton more going through my head now!  I could barely sleep last night and had dreams all in spanish - well broken spanish!  I find myself trying to interpret everything I am thinking and saying to the kids into spanish! (he doesn't speak any english)  I am so excited!  I can hardly stand it!! (can you tell???) So yes, I have basically a day to prepare for his arrival and this day is already jammed packed with activities, but I wouldn't have it any other way!

Mom of the Year moment???

So the rule in the house is that EVERYONE including Mommy must go potty before we get in the car.  -Can you already see where this is going?? Saturday afternoon just Lola and I were going to go to the store to pick out new dishes.  (We have what's left of the original set from 14 years ago that we got as shower gifts before getting married -so it is definitely time)  Daddy got Lola ready while I got in the car.  Lola and I stopped in one store, but didn't find what we wanted so we went to another store.  The rain that had been drenching us as we hurried through the packed parking lot turned into icy snow and it slowed us down- yes in April!!! We got into the store, went up the escalator, and found the dishes.  I had just picked up a dish to look at the price tag when Lola said something.  I'll give you one guess! (you won't guess right though!) "Mommy!  Something is happening right now!" "What is it?"  I turned to look at her and saw she was

Oogly Balls!

Grandparents are fabulous.  Let's get that out of the way right now! At times though, the very cool things they give the kids should just stay at their homes and never enter mine! One such cool thing are these balls: They look really pretty in vases with water don't they?  They are also cool to watch because as they suck up water the balls get bigger!  Unfortunately with little kids it isn't enough to just look at the balls.  We want to touch them!  As Tyce puts it - "They are ooglie"  So soon the balls go   from this....  to this!!      They are basically what is inside a baby's diaper that sucks up liquid.  So if you mash a bunch of them up they get stuck all over EVERYTHING and are impossible to to remove!  It has been days and I am still finding what I refer to as the insides of diapers around the house! Yes, I should have put them up and out of reach really fast, but my kids are faster and ultimately

Four Year old Teenager

Today I heard my teenage self in my four year old daughter! She stood in front of me with her hands on her hips.  She swung her head so her hair flew behind her shoulder and she had the most defiant look on her face.  With a very grown up sounding voice she said, "Mom, you never let me do ANYTHING!"  She let out a "humph" and stomped to her room. This is bad.  This is VERY bad!  If she is already acting like this at four what will she be like at 14??? I'd be lying if I didn't say I was a little bit scared!!! (maybe a lot scared!) HELP!!!

All Skate!!

Do the sight of these bring back memories? We used to have roller skating parties with our class when I was a kid.  That was the huge thing!  It was the social event of the year!  I specifically remember "Lady's Choice".  I remember the sound of that over the loud speaker made me nervous, but I don't remember if I ever went and grabbed onto a sweaty hand to skate around the rink! Although, some of the songs have changed, the atmosphere has not! We took the kids skating for the first time ever the other night!  I started off without the skates so I could walk the little ones around the rink. After being begged by Ryan and the kids, I put on skates only to find that I skate exactly the same way I did as a kid - unable to stop without running into a wall!  This is of no help to my children so what a sight we all were! Jackson was tenative at first, but once he got over his initial fear he took off around the floor!  Lola voomed off on her own very quickly, but Tyce

It Works! Wednesday - Pain Reilf

A newer product that has everyone on it raving about how awesome it is is Relief .   Relief feels like you are taking an aspirin.  It takes the pain away.  Relief is used by people who have pains in their joints such as arthritis sufferers.  It repairs the cartilage and makes flexing and bending easier!  I have had clients take this product and tell me that within 4 days they are noticing a huge difference and won't go back to their old medications but continue on Relief!

More kids - but what does it mean???

I have mentioned before that we are increasing in number over here through refugee foster care!  We are super excited and it looks like we may have new children in our home within the next 60 days!  I have been getting a lot of questions about what this exactly means.  To put it bluntly we will have up to three new family members!  They will be with us until they can be on their own which we would hope is around age 18 - 21 for all of our children!  They will most likely be 12 - 17 years old when they come to live with us. Our new children will be refugees from another country.  This means that due to some factor they fled or were forced to leave their country of origin.  They either were in a refugee camp or actually arrived in the US.  Officials search for their families and evaluate their situation.  If it isn't too dangerous and there wasn't abandonment or neglect the youth will be sent back to their families.  If their family can not be found or there are other circums

My Dark Day

Today is my "dark day".  Today is the day 9 years ago that I thought my entire world had ended.  We lost our first son, Nathaniel J when I was 15 weeks pregnant. I don't want to be depressing, but each year on this day I like to take some time and remember him.  I know that I never really "met" him or got to play with him, but the minute you are pregnant you have an image and a dream for your unborn child and the loss for me was just as great as if I had been able to cuddle him. Of course for everyone it is different, but I found different things that helped me through the pain, grief, and guilt.  Today as I remember Nathaniel, I wanted to share these in the hopes of helping someone else. We named him.  I didn't want him to be forgotten.  He was a significant part of our lives even as an unborn child. We gave family members cards with a verse on it that the funeral home gave to us. I wrote him a letter and I wrote about the entire experience . (don

Let Me Introduce You....

To my tub. Isn't she a beauty?  I'm sad to admit that she is by far the most neglected out of our entire household.  She is so neglected in fact that I have to dust her off and search for her under the dry cleaning before she is functional! But oh how I have missed her and love her!  Slipping into that hot water, being massaged by the jets, feeling relaxed by the bath ball disintegrating next to me.  Why don't I do this all of the time??  What serenity, what peace, what joy!  "What?" "WHAT?" "Just a minute!"  "Just a minute!"  "JUST A MINUTE!!" (me yelling to the children-and having to get out of my serenity!) And that would be why she is so neglected......

Just Wait 5 Minutes and it will Change...

I'm not normally a "weather" talker unless I am really bored or a bit nervous, but today is an exception!  In Michigan you don't often see a day like today in April!  We hit a high of 85 today which is a new record last set 80 years ago! We took full advantage of the day by cleaning out the garage and cars.  We got all of the summer toys out and the kids even wanted to run through sprinklers!  We didn't turn on the outside water quite yet so they rode their bikes back and forth on the sidewalk instead. We fully enjoyed the day outside and the just the fact that I didn't have to wear socks or slippers on my freezing feet in the house is enough to keep me happy!  Now, if you know anything about Michigan weather, you will know that you only have to wait 5 minutes and it will change.  It is forecasted that tomorrow it will be back to normal - a high in the upper 40s! 

You will get a turn... be patient....

People - tourists - get a little crazy at the Disney Parks.  Most of the adults are worse then the kids!  On one particular day I was standing in line with my two little ones to see Tinker Bell.  We had been by the line twice before and weren't able to get in the line because they stop taking people after a certain amount.  Lola REALLY wanted to see Tink so we finally got there early enough to get in line and wait for our turn.  You see, Tinker Bell is really popular at the moment and is only at Epcot in one location so this was our only chance! It was really hot out that day and we were standing in the direct sun.  Rather, I was standing in the direct sun.  Lola and Tyce were relaxing comfortably in their strollers with their shades overhead and their sippy cups filled with cold water.  The wait was long and hot.  When I got into line a mom, dad, grandma, and two little ones got in line behind us.  The little ones were cranky and hot so the dad and grandma took them around to

Playing Frogger in a Parking Lot at Night!

I know how easy it is to be soo excited that when you finally get to your vacation destination you don't look around.  We arrived at the Disney Parks each day, unloaded the stroller, cooler, backpack, tickets, camera, and the kids.  We raced to the entrance to get through the gates as soon as we could so we could race to the most popular ride to be sure we had a chance to enjoy it in a timely manner!  Somewhere along the line we forgot to look around us!  We forgot to pay attention to not only where we parked, but the people around us, the smells, the sounds, and view in amazement at what we had before us.  In actuality if we had stopped we would have been trampled, but we are going to have to remember to do time??? On our last day in Disney we went to Hollywood Studios.  We stayed until it was dark.  We left after Fantasmic, which is a fantastic show that features lights, fireworks, real characters, water, and sound.  The day was fabulous and everyone was in good spir

Disney - Our Last Day - Hollywood Studios

Monday was our last full day in Disney so we got up to be at Hollywood Studios when it opened.  Of course I had a plan of attack! I was told by more than one person that Toy Story Mania was the most popular and funnest ride so I was supposed to get a Fast Pass and then wait in line for the ride itself right away.  The mad rush to the ride, which of course is toward the back of the park, was unreal!  People were trying to run without running.  You could just feel the frenzy in some people and that kind of thing is contagious!  It was not pleasant!  Jackson and Dad getting ready!  Lola and Nana ready to shoot! Ryan took all of our tickets and got us all Fast Passes for the ride while the rest of us got in line for the ride.  Unfortunately he didn't make it on to the first ride with us.  The ride is an arcade game with 3D glasses.  You have to shoot things and get points for it.  At the end you see your score so you can go on again to try to beat the score.  From the lo

It Works! Wednesday - Keeping it Moving..

Whether you are focusing on weight loss or becoming healthier, this next supplement is perfect for both purposes! It's Regular is exactly what you may think it is!  It  keeps things moving through and out of your body in the way your body is supposed to work!  You need to think of your colon as your "toxic pathway".  Whatever your body doesn't want, or can't use goes into your colon to be disposed of.  If everything your body can't use or want just sits there then all of those toxins and bad things just seep right back into your cells!  Gross!  This is why you will feel sluggish, get headaches, acne, and all of the fun stuff I know you really look forward to!!! ;) You can store up to 6 meals in your colon!  Get that stuff moving!  I have heard some people say you put three trains in and three trains should be coming out!  We know this is true for babies!  Adults should be going at least once a day.  If you aren't, there is something wrong!! Take one

It Works! Wednesday - The Opportunity of a Lifetime!

I love it when It Works! does this!!  They have dropped the price to sign up as a distributor and have added things to your business builder kit that have never been in it before! Sign up from now until April 30th and you will get 8 wraps which you can sell and make $200 from!  You will have a replicated web-site, catalogs, blitz cards (coupons), a folder, other promotional materials and forms, and a tape measure (my favorite!).  The price to sign up is only $99 (regularly $199 and you don't get all of the things I have listed above in the regular kit) When you sign up 4 loyal customers in your first 30 days you will also get $100 in free product!  In addition, if you sign up distributors yourself and they get 2 customers in their first 30 days the company will give you $100 for each distributor that does that that you sign up!! I can't help sharing this amazing deal!  I am now able to stay home with my kids and do the things that I need to and want to do for my family! 

Now I Know!!

Now I know. I never understood before. Why would you go to Disney every year for vacation?  It can be crowded, maybe redundant, maybe just for kids, and not to mention expensive! I now understand why you would want to visit Disney year after year.  It took me a few days at Walt Disney World visiting all of the parks, but it finally hit me! First, let me address my assumptions about Disney.  Yes, it can be crowded, but if you plan things out appropriately and go with a plan you can see as much as you want in a short time!  The first day at the Magic Kingdom I didn't stick with my plan because we got to the park later then I had wanted and it really threw everything off.  As a side note, when traveling with small children if you are able to have a day just to hang out after your travel day before going to Disney - do it!  My kids were so excited to be in a hotel away from home with new sleeping arrangements that they didn't get to sleep until maybe 3 - 4 hours after norm