Trying to raise my kids the best I can

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Happy New Year

"Therefore if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come." 2 Corinthians 5:17

Perfection Acheived

Four records broken tonight:
  • most points scored by a team in an NFL season
  • most touchdowns passes for Brady: 50
  • most touchdown catches for Moss: 23
  • only team that's ever gone 16-0 in a season
Oh yeah, and I was that person in church who, during the prayer and praise time, said "Praise God for 16 and O" :)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

I must be a loser

Due to the busyness of Nursing school this year I wasn't able to get my Christmas cards out yet. I'll send them soon- New Years cards I guess. What's really depressing is that, without the prompting of my yearly Christmas card, we only got three Christmas cards this year. And two of those were family. Bah humbug.

good times

I actually had a very relaxing and happy Christmas. Maybe I was in such a good mood because Timmy cleaned the house with me and went to the laundry mat with me to do practically all the laundry in the house. I got a few cute little pink things for the baby. I get happy whenever I look at them.

And we had a nice time with family too. (Both sides). My in-laws got to talking about the citizenship exam because my sister-in-law is scheduled to take it in February. She listens to a CD with facts about America on it. It's very cute. So we were all quizzing each other "Who's the Vice-President?" "Who's the President's wife?" "Who's the Governor?" The one thing she knew that I didn't know was President Lincoln's assassination date. Impressive. Then we all laughed hysterically as they retold the story of how her husband got kicked out of the immigration place when they asked him who the first president was and he said "Bill Clinton". good times. good times.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Supine Hypotensive Syndrome

With my first pregnancy I had supine hypotensive syndrome- where your blood pressure drops and you feel lightheaded when on your back. Then with my next two babies I didn't experience it. I didn't think much of it until now- I've got it again. And worse than ever; which shouldn't surprise me as Saphira has given me every symptom worse than her brothers. (Just, please, not labor). It feels like you don't have enough oxygen but breathing faster doesn't help (which, technically, is exactly what's going on). Last night I wasn't even comfortable on my sides- which is supposed to cure it. This is going to be a real fun third trimester. It's interesting to me that this symptom is not automatically triggered by fetal weight. It must have more to do with positioning, etc.


Thursday, December 20, 2007

The semester is over (whew)

It's finally over. I'm half way through nursing school- three quarters if you count the pre-req's. I think I safely speak for my entire class when I say I'm burnt out. But miraculously every single one of us passed! (praise God!). This baby has caused me to switch to the part-time/evening program in January and I'm so grateful for the change in pace.

On our last clinical day we got together for presentations and reflections on the semester. Nearly all of us cried, but I have to say I cried first and the hardest. I told everyone how much I'm going to miss them.

Some clinical highlights...
  • The elderly woman who I really connected with. She raved about her niece who visited her. But on the last day I found out from the site nurse that she was really very neglected and that no one cared or visited her. I grieved for her.
  • The stroke patient who I spent so much time with and bonded with. She had right side paralysis but moved her leg for the first time when I was dressing her. We shared the moment of triumph together. Nobody else seemed to care. But we both knew how special it was.
  • The gal bladder surgery I got to witness. My first experience since school started that really satisfied the scientist in me. My classmates laughed and told everyone how I came out of the surgery wanting to be a surgeon. I was so pumped that day.
  • The flu clinic I got to do. I honed my injection technique and by the end I was smooth as butter and joking with the nervous men "How are you today?... Good until now, right?"
  • The alzheimers day care center I went to that was so well run and impressive that I told my mom "I'd put you in there". We had a good laugh over that one.
I'm (really) glad the semester is over with and will never forget the classmates who endured it beside me.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


So last night my husband fell asleep early and I stayed up, flipping through the channels of TV. There was a boxing match on between two hot young Russian guys: Yuri Foreman and Andrey Tsurkan. yum. But my husband rolls over and says to me "Turn that off. You're keeping me awake and I know you're only watching that because you think they're cute". Busted.

Deena weighs in on Jamie Lynn Spears

She's 16 and pregnant, and somewhat of a role model, being the star of Zoe 101. So the media is, of course, all over this. And this morning on TV they showed several clips of concerned parents who disapprove or worry about this whole thing. So I just had to weigh in my two cents to try to balance out this obsessed media. I'm glad she chose life and if one of my sons ever gets a girl pregnant (or Saphira :)) I hope they'll chose life. Babies are always a blessing from God. Even when you're 17 and unmarried (Brandon). Even when your husband is facing 20 years in jail (Wolfie). Even when the dictator of your country has just decided that your people should all be slaughtered (Timmy).

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


CREAM- that's a rap throw-back for any of you that know the reference (probably none of you, but it was a nice thought).

Anyway, I was never one to care about money or materialistic things. But lack of money is really starting to affect me physically. It makes me breathe shallowly. It makes my thoughts race. It puts me in a catatonic state. Poverty is literally starting to drive me insane. I'm not sure what to do.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Baby Crazy

I'm so conditioned to want a baby that this morning in my half-sleep state I felt a little bit nauseas and my immediate thought was "ooh, maybe I'm pregnant!".


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

When you're married to an immigrant

There's always funny moments to be had when you're married to an immigrant. Like just now when Timmy pulled out his work schedule for next week and then exclaimed angrily, "I wasn't supposed to work on Christmas!". I looked over his shoulder at the schedule and said "Next weeks not Christmas" and he said "Yes! look. The 22nd". ha ha.


Monday, December 10, 2007

Pray for my baby! UPDATED

I'm not sure if my water broke or not but I'm going to the hospital.

She's OK. I'll never know if it was a false alarm or a miracle. What happened was... I pulled an all nighter for school. In between work I was amusing myself with You Tube bloopers. Some of them made me laugh so hard. When I stood up at 5:30 the cushy chair was absolutely drenched. But it didn't smell like pee. I dabbed it with a paper towel. It was clear. So I called the doctor and Timmy took me to the hospital. On the way there Saphira was kicking like crazy- and really low in my cervix. Maybe she was distressed or maybe she was getting my adrenaline. I don't know. On the way to the hospital I cried and told God that she was His if He wanted. But when I got there she was monitored and I was tested for amniotic fluid and everything came back normal. So I was discharged- just in time to make it to class. I didn't believe them at first, but as the hours have worn on and there's been no leaking and no contractions I'm starting to believe she's going to be OK. Thank you, Lord, for letting me keep her a little longer.


ROTFL (Rolling on the floor laughing) from this one

I could watch this a hundred times. It doesn't stop getting funny.

Sunday, December 09, 2007


This is a real store sign from a posh food store in New York's Greenwich Village. It was spotted by Manhattan novelist Nancy Kay Shapiro, 46, who posted it on her blog. The company will be reviewing its employee training.

Expounding on Grace Based Discipline

Some other principals of Grace Based Discipline:

Tomato Staking
The most important part of Grace Based Discipline is spending enormous amounts of time with them, modeling good behavior, and creating a relationship of respect. This is especially the key during the teenage years as they start taking more responsibility and making decisions for themselves. Adolescence is when GBD starts to separate itself from punitive discipline -which is about forcing a child to do what you think is right. GBD is about teaching a child to decide for himself what is right.

Set them up for success.
The other day when I lost it with my little 3 year olds, this is what I didn't do. If I had been on my game I should have sat them in the kitchen, next to me, with some crayons and paper. I know they would have happily colored, but instead I just let them loose in the livingroom where they inevitably found the loudest, messiest activities.

Natural Consequences
Punishment should always be a natural consequence to an action, as opposed to an artificial one like spanking. For instance a child who has stolen would have to pay back the money. A child who makes a mess would have to clean it (with you, if they are too young to do it themselves).

"Time outs", in the punitive sense, are not a natural consequence, but if you or your child is having big emotions that preclude them from being with other people a "time out" until you calm down is definitely called for. A "time out" was exactly what I needed the other day when I lost my temper. For a child who is out of control, you can explain to them that they are not being punished but they need to be in a separate place until they calm down- at which point they are free.


Friday, December 07, 2007

Black people just don't understand

I get so pale in the winter. Like a ghost. You can see huge networks of veins and arteries. One might think I had vericose veins. But no. That's just see-through skin. I'm a walking anatomy book open to the vascular system page.

This is painfully funny

Grace-Based Discipline (or lack thereof-today)

I practice Grace-Based Discipline. One of the defining characteristics (on the outside) is that I don't believe in spanking - nor do I believe the Bible condones it (that's a different post). But far from being permissive, Grace-Based Parenting is what I like to call "Get off your butt parenting". There are so many aspects of GBD that I can't sum it up in one post but a wonderful start to Grace Based Parenting is:


Step 1: State your request and offer a reason.
Example: "You need to stop yourself from playing and clean up. It is time to leave.

Step 2: Restate your request.
Example: "You need to stop yourself from playing and clean up."It is helpful to get down on the child's level and touch your child while looking in his eyes to make sure you have his attention.

Step 3: Offer help.
Example: "You are having a hard time stopping your play. Can you stop playing and clean up or do you need my help?" Whether your child requests help or not respect their wishes. Help is not a punishment, it is help.

Step 4: Help.
Example: "You are not stopping your play. Here, let me help you."Again, help is not a punishment. It is an acknowledgment that your child is unable to stop on their own. This may be due to a lack of maturity, being tired or hungry, or simply not wanting to stop.

Step 5: The Bear Hug.

Stand behind your child and wrap your arms over her shoulders and across her chest. Hold her arms with your hands if you are concerned about her striking out. Squat down to her level and speak gently in her ear that you are helping her stop herself and that you will let her go when she can stop herself. Gentle pressure on her shoulders can keep her from kicking or attempting to run from you. This is not a punishment. It is providing outside boundaries for a child who lacks internal boundaries.

Anyway, today I lost... It wonderful day, but a stressful one too. I decorated the tree with my kids and neices and nephews. Then I went upstairs to cook with my rambunctious 3 year old son and 3 year old neice. I gave them goldfish crackers to eat while I cooked... which they crushed all over the floor. I cleaned it up and went back to cooking but they were soon screaming and throwing blocks around - while my father in law was trying to sleep in the next room. That's when I lost it. I went in there and hit them both - not hard enough to hurt them, but hard enough to scare them. My older nephew came and cleaned up the blocks and I gave them hugs and told them I was sorry and that Ming (Auntie) loves them. Then I went in the kitchen and cried at the thought of getting so mad at those two. Sigh, the joys of parenting while pregnant.
So that's how not to discipline.

Since this is coming up 3rd on google for "Graced based Discipline" I thought I should link to my more informative post about the subject here.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Diagramming Sentences

I generally lean towards "child led learning"/unschooling. You know, encouraging them to learn from their interests. I admit this is totally the opposite of that philosophy but nonetheless... I went to a private school that spent oodles of time teaching diagramming sentences. I hated it at the time but now I'm totally thankful. There are times when I diagram a sentence in my head to figure out if a word is right (mostly subject/verb agreement). The lack of grammar skill these days perturbs me, though I'm not sure if diagramming sentences is a requirement for literacy or if just learning grammar rules will do. don't know/shrug It's just sad to me that diagramming sentences, like cursive, is a skill that is not being taught anymore. (At least in our school district). Just yesterday I corrected my fifth grade son's teacher's writing on his paper. She wrote: "Lions have large claws which helps them hunt." Obviously giggle it's supposed to be: "Lions have large claws which help them hunt." Rule 13


Monday, December 03, 2007

Hilarious Craigslist "Best of"

If you've never gone to Craigslist best-of category - you've got to check it out. It's a compilation of all the posts, nationwide, that were flagged for being funny. I just read some and thought this one was hilarious:

"I'm sorry. You were taking so long in the bathroom and this guy was looking at me. Next thing I knew we were making out and you came back and stormed out of the bar. I just want you to know that I really liked you and I'm not gay, I just have gay experiences sometimes. You are a beautiful girl and I'm glad that you came on date with me. I would like very much to try again. This time I will give all my love to you."


Saturday, December 01, 2007

My review of the movie "Awake"

I went to see Awake opening night. It's a medical thriller, which is why I was interested in it. It touts itself as kind of a horror movie, but really it's not. The part where the guy is cut open unesthetized was kind of amusing to me- perhaps not to others. Anyway, I didn't know anything about the plot and was pleasantly surprised that it actually had a good one. The storyline keeps you very interested, never boring. It ends up being sort of a mystery/thriller. I highly recommend it. I give it four out of five stars.

Labels: ,

<BASE href=" /"> <META NAME="Keywords" CONTENT="parenting blog, natural mother, all natural mother, parenting tips, parenting techniques, homeschool mother, christian mother, mothering tips, mothers blog "> <META NAME="Description" CONTENT="An All Natural Mother’s Guide to Parenting: Find information on Parenting.">