Sunday, November 23, 2014

We've Been

We've Been...


- trying out new gluten free recipes
- licking spoons
- listening to Christmas music before Thanksgiving ( I can't help myself)


- organizing bedrooms
- wrapping gifts (trying to be done before December)
- reading Froggy books (my boys are crazy about them)


- dancing indoors when it's too cold to dance outdoors
- playing legos
- slacking off on our workbook pages


- trying out our second hand winter gear
-looking cute as a button in our second winter gear
- making the most of our sunny weather (a storm is a brewin')


- trying to pretend it's summer and chug lemon water (who really wants water when it's cold anyway?)
- making a 6 foot long grocery list for upcoming visitors and festivities
- having family movie nights
- eating tons of bananas now that berries are out of season
- enjoying our warm home
- giving out care packages to those without
- remembering those around us that feel sadness instead of joy during this time of year
- growing closer as a family

Monday, November 17, 2014

Snow

The snow came and hasn't left. Unlike last year (maybe it just hasn't been that long yet) I haven't felt cooped up really at all. We'll just say that I think I've finally mastered the art of layering my clothes and keeping my feet warm...a hot drink in my hand and the curtains pulled all the way back - it's been peaceful. It's been pretty calm. It's been what a snowy week should be. 


Yes, do you see my child in the 20 degree weather without pants on ? It's all for the sake of filming - she and Brady would run out and say a few lines, his i pod posed and ready to go, then they would run in and warm their hands and head back out. The fun only lasted 20 minutes or so and then Trinity let her brother know she had had enough and that she wasn't wearing a long coat and boots like him and she was gonna find a blanket. 


There...now that's how to dress for the snow. 


Snow
Gentle flakes
Soft and white
Drifting, falling
Through the night
In silent wonder
As I slept
Glistening secrets
Darkness kept
With morning light
Appearing bright
Peering out
Brought pure delight
The mundane world
I thought I knew
Had been transformed
To something new
The filters
I’d been seeing with
Could not survive
This viewpoint shift
It shocked me into
Present time
Beyond the trappings
Of my mind
Here and now
In awe and wonder
Dissolving illusions
I’d been under
Nature’s beauty
So intensely real
Hearts spill open
And people feel
In this space
We come alive
In this joy
Our spirits thrive
Seek the beauty
In all things
Feel gratitude
For what life brings
Stop and smell the roses
Breathe the sparkling air
The magic in that flake of snow
Is lurking everywhere.

Dan Coppersmith

Monday, November 10, 2014

Goodbye Warmth, Hello Chill


The day started sunny...almost balmy. I went outside to our shed (in search of a holiday box) and was surprised how comfortable I was in just a long sleeve shirt.  I called the kids to come enjoy the last few moments of our true autumn weather...clouds were approaching. Only minutes went by when a huge gust blew through our yard, leaves swirled and fell and the air immediately went from warm to crisp to almost biting. I guess the Arctic Blast we've been hearing so much about on the weather channel arrived...and we watched it come. 


The kids started flapping their arms,  trying to keep up with the whirlwind of leaves flowing around the perimeter of our yard. My littles were laughing, taking joy from nature ... the power of it, the mystery of it, the colors and the touch of it...the chill of it. Deep belly laughs filled our yard and I watched the joy...I took it in and placed it deep inside of me, a memory I will never forget - my babies dancing in the leaves, arms lifted almost in praise...loving their little backyard, loving the beautiful earth we've been given, enjoying each other...enjoying what matters


I watched the clouds covering our bright sun, the rain of leaves falling on our yard...and bid the warmth a rather glum farewell. 


The littles weren't glum...they were still laughing and running and exerting whatever energy they could while their was still space (our basement starts feeling a bit snug during long indoor days.)


They call him "Wind In His Hair." 


The last of my yellow leaves...it's now snowing outside and by the time the week is over the world will be bare and brown ... with maybe a little white here and there. Good bye 60 degree weather...hello 8 degree highs. Hello warm slippers and tea. Hello increased energy bills. Hello winter squashes and greens ... good bye berries and organic grapes (see you when prices are down.) 


After our wind dance and our good byes to fall weather ... we came in and unpacked our holiday mugs, made cocoa, and snuggled on the couch.


Hello snuggles. Hello Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. Hello cookies and cocoa and stories all day. Hello early winter. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

That Kind of Day


It's a Mario and Luigi Day.
It's a Chilly Fall Day.
It's a Sunny Sky Kinda Day.
It's a "Hang with Your Bud in the Backyard" Sweet Day. 



It's a "My Baby isn't a Baby Anymore" Day.
It's "Prop That Kid Anywhere" Sort of Day.
It's a Piano Music Day.


Today is a Day I Can Exercise.
It's a Clementine and Date Snack Day.
It's a Healthy Heart, Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Day.


It's a Love On Your New Best Friend Day.
It's a "Glasses Are Cool" Day (and everyday.)


It's a Blessed Day.
It's a Good Day.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

My Hurt and My Joy



 It's a peaceful morning. Finn climbed into bed with me, snuggled up under the covers and told me the same thing he tells me every morning ... that he's hungry and ready to watch "cow" (his favorite little video about farms.) I get up, searching in the dark for my slippers ...it's cold now in the mornings. I get him settled on the couch, a warm quilt wrapped around his little diaper clad body... pour myself a cup of coffee, read some Scriptures to start my day. I light a candle and put on some soft music and begin cleaning the kitchen, hoping to accomplish a couple of things before my other three littles get up.
 I check my e mail  and see a message a friend has sent me ...wondering if I would be interested in this "new" study they are doing on autism...I read about this astounding "link" they are finding between mutated genes from some couple and if they have children with high functioning autism. This is nothing new, nothing I haven't read before ... but it makes me feel sad. Instant tears run down my face ... my peaceful morning colliding with my not so peaceful reality.


We have three sons. All of our boys are beautiful inside and out. All of our boys are bright and growing and blooming into wonderful people. All of our sons have high functioning autism.


 I'm not sad that they are mine. I do not feel that they "lack" in any way. I love all of my boys more then words or songs or poems or anything could ever say. 
 But...when I read studies that want to "link" their condition to one cause, or I talk to doctors who callously tell me that environmental issues aren't to blame for this neurological condition, or that they are this way because of "genes" I feel guarded, I feel sad, I feel defensive...sometimes I feel angry....sometimes I feel smart and proud that I have more information than some "professionals." I guess, what it comes down to is that I see the heart of my children, I see the beauty and the creativity and the specialness that is them - I see more than mutated genes and I'm willing to go further then to just say "me and my  husband obviously have genes that aren't compatible and we make babies with issues." 
 I love the quirkiness of my little guys, I love their individuality - but sometimes I grieve. Sometimes it is is early in the morning, in the quiet that I thank God for my blessings, but I also tell Him of my fears and my wants and my pain. Sometimes the hurt strikes unexpectedly when I look at other people's family photos, or when I sit in a restaurant and watch a child sitting at a nearby table, enjoying his meal, connecting with his parents in an obvious sort of way. Sometimes I hurt when I'm on a playdate and I see that my kids aren't like the other kids...sometimes it hurts when I'm in the middle of some long repetitive motion or communication that I have with one of my boys EVERY SINGLE DAY without fail. Sometimes it hurts unexpectedly...when I check an e mail, or watch a new documentary on our food, our air, the pharmaceutical industry. It hurts when I see two people walking, holding hands...and I wonder if my boys will be able to experience that kind of love and connection with another person.  Sometimes, it's early in the morning with my lit pine scented candle and soft piano music and I feel peaceful...and I hurt peacefully. I know that my hurt doesn't change my love... change the status of my joy...it's just a moment of hurt.  
 I am a mother to three sons with autism - I rejoice in their differences, I grieve their differences...this is what is real and what is OKAY. Above all, I love ... I celebrate...and I give thanks for three blessings who are more than mutated genes. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Four Costumed Munchkins and One Happy Seven Year Old


The last few days have brought us...
1. One little prairie girl
2. One energetic Link
3. One teeny yellow Minion
4. One very "serious about his business" Superman

( We celebrated an early Halloween with our kids and then promptly exchanged glow in the dark aliens for their candy stash - a win/win for all. )


My new peg doll obsession saved the day (errr....cake.) Trinity told me that she wanted a Princess cake for her birthday...so with a little thought I decided to give her a Frozen themed cake to go with her new movie we bought her. 


She was pretty much elated with her cream cheese "snow" frosting with glittery sprinkles and Ana and Elsa sitting on top. Trinity had a lovely seventh birthday, complete with a one on one date with mom and dad, a shopping spree with her birthday money, a friend coming over for a girly slumber party - and some beautiful dolls and thrifted doll clothes. I can't believe my baby girl is Lucky Seven and I'm so proud of her giving heart, her warm smile, and her strong desire to do good and to love others. I learn from Trinity everyday - she is a treasure. 
Happy Early Halloween and I will see you in November!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Oh For Joy... Second Version

Oh For Joy, 
Sunlit living room, little boy bouncing
Oh for Joy


Creativity, colors, marker stained hands
Oh For Joy


Glass, colors, butterflies forever flying ... always reminding me of God's love ... a precious gift from a friend forever, Oh For Joy. 


Pine scented candles way before Christmas...Why not? The freedom to be what I want to be, the freedom to taste what I want to taste, the freedom to smell what I want to smell ...
Joy Taken for Granted.  


Faces looking up at the sky, a simple nap in autumn time. Flower covered tummy's and bright pink capris, growing legs and deep rolling belly laughs - my heart could break from so much joy. 


Three little loves, all in a row - Joy. (I didn't put them in this position...promise.)


Bare feet, secrets, wild imaginations...


...accomplishments, something new out of something old, sweet smiles and handmade toys
I could sing from so much joy. 


Ring Around the Rosy goodness, jumping as high as little feet can jump, flying and hand holding and singing out loud as loud as you can...simple sweet childhood joy. 


Rough and tumbling, feet in the air, laughing together in the cool fall breeze,
Free, Loved, Admired ... true joy. 


Stepping stones...life's lessons, life's gifts, God's love...
I've found Joy.