Trying to raise my kids the best I can

Monday, June 29, 2009


I love this new song

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Bragging on my loved ones

Timmy: Today we went to the sprinkler park and Timmy was shy at first because it's a bunch of kids and a few moms. But as soon as he came in- I swear- six other men came in with their kids. It was so heartwarming. I love that he was like a leader in that regard. Making it seem cool to play with your kids. I love it when dads interact with their kids.

Brandon: He is almost completely self-sufficient!!! I am sooo proud of this because it is my goal as a mother to teach my kids everything they need to know to be a contributing adult. He does his own laundry. He keeps his room clean. He works hard. Has good manners. Great hygene. Is full of compassion and sensitive to others. Likes to work out. Eats healthy. Knows how to cook several meals. Has ironed clothes a few times. And today he even mopped his room, of his own undertaking! The other day he and Wolfie were talking about what jobs they will get some day and how they can move out and go to college and be roommates. It makes all the hard work of motherhood seem worthwhile.

He's finally putting on some weight. For about a year he was scary thin- a walking skeleton. I knew his body had suffered so much from the two plus years of gluten intolerance when we didn't know. That just wreaks havoc on your intestines and your ability to absorb nutrients. Then, once we did know, we had a hard time finding enough gluten free foods that he would eat to put any weight on him. But 15 months after the discovery I am just soooo happy to see him filling out!! My baby is thickening up. It's such a huge relief. And he very rarely has accidental gluten exposures anymore- so his body is really healing. And we've got a good selection of gluten free foods for him now. I even make him homemade pizza about once a week- totally from scratch- which saves us a ton of money.

Dimitri: This kid is a skateboarding prodigy! I'm telling you! He just loves the sport and he is uuuh-mazing. He can do all sorts of tricks. And he's just five!! His older brothers aren't into skateboarding, so this sport is a unique interest of his. I think it's pretty cool that he took to it all on his own.

Her hair is fiiiiiiinally long enough to pull into two tiny pig tails. She looks just like boo from Monsters Inc. It is sooooo cute. And then, what she does that really makes me melt is she walks around saying "Happy-appy-appy-appy". the girl is just happy! She is such a joy. Timmy and I float on air around her. She's our princess.


Obama Is Running A "Gangster" Government

She is very eloquent. I admire her for that.

But to the point... why are we in this position- in which government is taking an inappropriate role in business? It is because the car manufacturers failed and asked for government help. Did they fail because the free market system is flawed? No. In my opinion, it failed because of certain ways in which the government was run poorly- not regulating health insurers correctly and giving a tax break to companies who leave the US, and -the biggie- the deregulation of futures trading, which skyrocketed oil prices and pretty much halted the sales of cars, especially bigger cars.

So, what's the congresswoman's point? That we need less government I guess? Well, I agree, in principal. Everyone agrees in principal. But it sounds as if she's completely ignoring the reality that brought us to this point. If we don't address the ways that government didn't do its job we'll only increase the number of ways government is inappropriately involved.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

An argument for women pastors

It seems to me that the Bible contradicts itself on this issue (as it does on many things) and when that happens we need to weigh the two sides and see which side makes more sense in light of the entire scripture. So on the one side we have the "Women can pastor" argument which rests on:

* the Christian principal that we are all equal in Christ
* the examples of women leaders that God chose, like the ones who were responsible for telling that Jesus rose from the dead

While the "women can't pastor" argument rests on

* Paul's interpretation of the creation story
* the idea that women are not of lesser value but instead have a different "role"
* an instruction Paul gave to a church

The "role" argument is very flimsy in my opinion, because in that argument- men can teach women and children and women can teach only children. And children can learn. But what about when Jesus taught in the temple as a child of 12? Clearly it's not a sin to step outside your "role". I see role as a general guideline for how life is, but not a command.

In regards to the creation argument I was thinking that "being created first" isn't a good argument for role or animals would be over man. But that's exactly what Paul is inferring “Adam was created first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived.” And nothing in the OT suggests why Eve was chosen by Satan to tempt first. In fact, you could more easily argue that she was chosen for deception because she got instructions from God second hand- a lesson to us that we should all communicate directly with God. If Paul's interprettations and instructions were valued equally to all other Biblical instruction than we would be following his instruction to women to remain completely silent in church and only ask their husbands questions at home. But we don't, because we have to weigh the whole Bible against itself and look at the surrounding circumstances of each verse....

...which in this case was a preference he was sharing with a friend not a universal command.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Respiratory exams

I'm kind of putting this here for my own use- so I can easily look this back up when I need it.

It's a really thorough description of how to perform respiratory exams on the elderly that I got from Medscape. I think this information will be really critical in the coming flu season.

The objective of the pulmonary assessment of a geriatric patient is to check for the following:

  • Quality of respiratory efficiency;
  • Gas exchange; and
  • Presence of disease.

Assessing Respiration Efficiency

Of note, if the patient is bedfast, complete evaluation of respiratory efficiency is often less than optimal because chest expansion is not always symmetric and percussion notes may be less resonant.

Respiratory Rate

Although a patient's respiratory rate is often recorded in his or her chart (most often as 20 breaths per minute), cultivate the discipline to obtain it yourself. Count the respirations for a minute and observe the pattern and degree of respiratory effort. Note that moving the diaphragm without moving any air does not count as a breath. Normal respiratory rates for older patients are12 to 18 breaths per minute for those living independently and 16 to 25 breaths per minute for those in long term-care.

Tachypnea. A respiratory rate of 20 breaths per minute (or more than 25 breaths per minute for someone in a nursing home) indicates tachypnea. In such cases, look for the following:

  • Infection (especially pneumonia);
  • Reactive airways disease (eg, in acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD], the patient has air trapping and cannot empty the lungs);
  • Congestive heart failure (patient pants in midrespiration);
  • Pulmonary embolus (very few elderly patients with pulmonary embolus have respiratory rates less than 16); and
  • Metabolic acidosis.

A respiratory rate of more than 30 breaths per minute in a patient with suspected abdominal disease suggests primary chest disease with referred symptoms to the abdomen.

Bradypnea. Bradypnea is a form of hypoventilation, in which the patient has a respiratory rate of less than 10 breaths per minute. In such cases, you might suspect severe myxedema, ingestion of central nervous system (CNS) depressants (eg, narcotics, benzodiazepines), or CNS disease (pontine hemorrhage, hypoglycemia, meningitis).

Respiratory Effort

Normal breathing is quiet and unlabored. If it is labored, it is important to note respiratory effort. In patients with pneumonia or acute abdomen, labored breathing prevents airway closure. Patients who have air hunger will often breathe with an open mouth. Pursed lip breathing mainly in expiration is seen in end-stage emphysema and suggests small-airway disease with terminal bronchiole collapse. Expiring with pursed lips increases the end-expiratory pressure, keeping the airways open and reducing the work of breathing. (It takes more work to put the first breath into a balloon than to add a breath to an already half-filled balloon.)

Audible Breath Sounds

Pay attention to the breath sounds. Wheezing, a musical sound, is an important clue to reactive airways or local obstruction. Coughing indicates lower airway irritation. Stridor (a high-pitched shrieking sound) implies partial airway obstruction. Expiratory stridor without inspiratory stridor suggests lower airway obstruction. Stridor on inspiration and expiration implies airway obstruction at the glottis. Of note, inspiratory stridor suggests obstruction in the oral airway or epiglottis and is a medical emergency.

Respiratory Patterns

Check for respiratory patterns and signs that indicate specific conditions. For example, inspiration interrupted by cough suggests pleuritic pain or inflammation. The following are other patterns and signs to look for.

Kussmaul's Respiration. Kussmaul's respiration is deep rapid respiration (an exaggeration of normal) in metabolic acidosis and is classically associated with diabetic ketoacidosis. Patients with Kussmaul's respiration may have an increase in tidal volume. While talking, they need to breathe between phrases, so their speech pattern can seem choppy.

Cheyne-Stokes Respiration. The pattern of Cheyne-Stokes respiration is one of increasingly deep respirations followed by a steady diminution of breathing until an apneic episode occurs, which can signify prolonged circulatory time or primary neurologic disease. Among the differential diagnoses are the following:

  • Primary CNS disease;
  • Chronic heart failure, meningitis;
  • Pneumonia;
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning; and
  • Medications (eg, morphine).

Obesity may be present. Some patients will show pupillary dilation with rapid breathing and pupillary contraction with apnea.

Biot's Breathing. Biot's breathing is characterized by irregular breathing (the "atrial fibrillation" of respiration) with sudden apneas. It suggests CNS disease and can be a sign of increased intracranial pressure or meningitis.

Apneustic Breathing. Apneustic breathing is seen in severely ill patients with coma. The patient holds his or her breath at the end of inspiration until the Hering-Breuer (carotid body) reflex initiates exhalation. This breathing pattern suggests pontine disease.

A link to a friends blog

My political antithesis, Erin, has a blog. I spend oodles of time debating her online. :) Anyway, she's giving away a book that sounds interesting (despite the author- gag me). "Common Sense". To enter her contest I have to link to her blog. So here it is folks. :)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Massachusetts gun law and thinking of moving

Gun laws are very restrictive in my state. (Which is ironic, because I can drive fifteen minutes North and Open Carry legally. Heh heh.) Guns have to be locked at all times in this state (except for certain situations). One man is taking this to the state supreme court, saying this is a violation of our contstitutional rights. I'll be very interested in seeing how it plays out. I'm somewhat interested in getting a gun because I like the idea that law abiding citizens should have more guns and criminals should have less guns. I think if responsible people like me had guns, there would be less crime.
...But we're thinking of moving anyway, so that law may not have any ramifications for me. I'm trying to convince Timmy to move South for the winter. I just can't take one more New England cold dreary winter, locked up in the house for six months!!! Plus I'm convinced Swine Flu will kill a million Americans (I calculated that statistic myself) so I think we'd be safer someplace warmer, where the flu virus isn't as strong. Not that I'm advocating fear or panic. I'm just trying to take precautions since one of my children is in the risky "under two" category.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sometimes we run out of money a week before payday and we'll literally eat through all of our food. It's interesting to watch how God provides for us during those times. It's almost fun. Like, "lets see how God does it today!" We haven't done credit cards since we declared bankruptcy two years ago. I think that's one of the advantages to living on cash only. Seeing God provide in real ways. Like today my landlord knocked on our door and said "want a lobster?" hunh?! God is soo cool. I hope that this economic downturn will bring people back to a reliance on the Lord. It can be a beautiful thing.

Labels: ,

Friday, June 12, 2009

Outdoor fun!

Yesterday the kids and I dragged an old tire and rope to a nearby public woods and we put up a tire swing. :) It was so much fun!! I love when we can enjoy the outdoors. And I love when we are creative and have fun without spending a penny.


Monday, June 08, 2009

Don't wait. Procreate.

me and Saphira

I found a couple of old time-lines I had written up year ago. Every so often I'll write a timeline of where I see my life going. Partly it's inspirational and partly it helps me plan. For instance, when I was in college it helped me figure out how many classes I had to take per semester if I wanted to graduate in a certain amount of time.

One thing, very interesting, that I noticed about these time-lines is that I would put off "having a baby" until after some achievement. For instance, in my first time line it was "pay off debt. Buy an apartment building" THEN "have a baby". (That didn't happen, by the way) And in my second time-line it was "get my nursing degree" THEN "have a baby". I think this is the practical, American/New England, responsible way. To plan and prepare before bringing a life into this world. But both times I got pregnant first. :) And I still managed to go on with my goals.

But waiting means the fleeting fertile years pass you by. So I just want to encourage people to dive in and become a parent. It doesn't have to stop your dreams from coming true.


Saturday, June 06, 2009

I propose a driving test

I have an idea that could prevent a lot of tragic accidents. You know how every once in a while an elderly driver will accidentally hit the gas instead of break and plow into someone or something? Well, I was thinking about the reason they do that. It's because they rest their foot instead of holding it up in the air over the break. So when they go to hit the break they have to guess where the pedal is and they guess wrong.

So I propose a simple test at the RMV where you put your foot flat on the floor and then have to hold the ball of your foot up for twenty seconds or something.

We would need to study what the amount of time that is needed to determine the cutoff between a potential accident and not... and just cuz I'm crazy like that I'm going to search online to see if the government is offering any "safety" or "transportation" grants that I could apply for. I probably won't be able to follow through on this idea though, so if anyone wants to take my idea and run with it, you have my blessing. Anything to make this world a safer place. :)

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Apologies to my readers!

I just found 19 unmoderated comments!!! DOH! A while ago I turned on moderation because I was getting some spam. I guess I thought it would still email me when I got a comment. Isn't that strange that the email notification turns off when you choose to turn on moderation? Anyhoo, I published all the comments except for two spam. Keep those comments coming!

Getting into a groove

Whenever there's a family interruption- like a move or a birth or whatever, it tends to mess up homeschooling for a while. This school year was full of interruptions with the three moves/being homeless. But this week, I feel like we finally got into our groove again. In the morning we go out- like today we went swimming at the Y, and yesterday I took the kids to see "UP" at the matinee. Then when we come home I have written on a marker board all of the chores and lessons I want the kids to get done. Brandon divides it up and we do it. It's working pretty well. Horray!


<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.">