Thursday, January 31, 2013

I Chose Joy

Because if I don't, then today will be a complete write off.  This morning, at the crazy early time of 5:30, my youngest peered into my face asking for breakfast.  I managed to stall her off until 5:45 when it was clear to methat neither of us were going to get any more sleep.  I fixed myself a coffee, filled her cup with juice and brought a small bowl of her "pink cheerios" upstairs so we could watch TV.  I figured since I was up, I'd get on my laptop and do the usual email and Facebook check and whatever else interested me at the time.  But... sweet blonde haired, grey-eyed daughter of mine wanted to "cungle wif mom".  So I set my computer aside and cuddled my sleepy-warm, pajama-clad, sweet-smelling toddler.

I will admit, my frustration increased when I saw Joshua and Arianna come down the hall, just minutes after 6:00.  My day was going to be off to a rip-roaring start and it was SO early.  I don't ask for much but I really just wanted to be alone for a little while.  It didn't seem like that was in the cards for me today.

I am having to make a conscious effort to be pleasant today simply because of how it started.  I'm going to need a super amount of patience and probably a few more cups of coffee.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

New Findings

So even though I don't claim to be an all natural or organics only kind of person, I do like to be as chemical free as possible, especially when it comes to my kids.  We've switched over to Melaleuca and Norwex cleaning products to reduce the amounts of "bad" stuff that's in the house.

For years now, Sarah has been chronically constipated which has made potty training really tough.  We were giving her suppositories every few days (poor baby) because it was so painful for her to go.  When we brought it up to her pediatrician, he suggested cutting out dairy, bananas and apples.  That's kind of hard when those foods make up a large part of her diet.  He also told us to give her PEG (Polyethylene Glycol) which is in the laxative known as RestoraLAX (or MiraLAX in the US).  I was happy to have found something that worked and worked fairly quickly.  It was encouraging to all of us that Sarah had relief from her discomfort.

Just recently on my Facebook page, someone posted some questionable information about the active ingredient PEG and it wasn't good findings.  I decided to do some of my own research and came up with the following information:

From The US Food and Drug Administration

A single recommended dose of MiraLAX contains 17 grams of pharmaceutical grade PEG powder [6], a humongous amount of what is otherwise an industrial-strength anti-fungicide, insecticide, and germicide strong enough to preserve wood beams, railroad ties, and electrical poles from fungi, insects, and bacteria practically forever. It works by displacing water in wood, which makes it resistant to warping and rotting.
Polyethylene glycol is made by stringing together molecules of ethylene glycol into a large polymer chain, hence the prefix poly-, Greek for many. On its own, ethylene glycol is used in automotive antifreeze and brake fluid. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, it is an extremely toxic substance:

“Ethylene glycol is chemically broken down in the body into toxic compounds. It and its toxic byproducts first affect the central nervous system (CNS), then the heart, and finally the kidneys.  Ingestion of sufficient amounts [as little as 30 ml — KM] can be fatal.” [2]

The term “neuropsychiatric events” in the FDA's safety alert refers to neurologic disorders of the central and peripheral nervous systems such as autism, dementia, depression, schizophrenia, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, and similar others [3]. These conditions result from PEG's direct (through cellular damage) and indirect (through malnutrition of essential micronutrients) neurotoxicity. No surprise there considering the quotation above.
*Cerebral Palsy isn't named specifically above but it is a neurological disorder*

And from Dr. Volpe in Houston, TX

Miralax has such a reassuring name that makes it sound like it is just the thing nature created for this problem. Fewer people might be willing to take it – or give it to their children – if they knew that the active ingredient is a chemical called polyethylene glycol (PEG), a close relative of ethylene glycol (antifreeze).  Why, you might ask, would something like antifreeze end up being used as a laxative?   Well, because it works, it is synthetic and can therefore be patented, and approval studies have not uncovered any dangers (in healthy adults).

However, in constipated adults (those who actually take the Miralax) some of the PEG is always absorbed, and studies have not been able to match the amount that is excreted to what is taken in. This, incidentally, confirms that individuals with constipation have an unhealthy and excessively porous intestinal tract. If some of the PEG is retained in the body the unanswered questions are where does it go, how long does it stay there and what does it do? You might also be wondering what happens to PEG in children, but the reality is that Miralax was not studied in children.

So if PEG and Miralax are out, what options do we have? The first and most obvious one is to find what is causing the constipation and correct it. By far the most common cause is food allergy or sensitivity and, among these, milk wins the contest by a long shot.

Well, now, after reading that Doug and I weren't so sure that this was the best product to put in our young daughter's body.  I decided to take some measures as far as her diet was concerned and see what happens with that.  I'm not going to throw away the MiraLAX yet but we are going eliminate cheese and reduce her dairy while increasing her juice intake, fruits such as canned peaches and pears and of course prunes.  

Today I found a recipe online that used a jar of pureed prunes plus a few chopped prunes in addition to chocolate chips and all the other good things found in cookies. At first bite, she seemed to really like them and there's enough chocolate chips to "hide" any of the prune taste.

The kids call them Crappy Cookies *sigh*

I'm really hoping and praying that through some dietary changes, we can help Sarah through her constipation issues more naturally.  If I find that the food isn't helping, I will give her a small dose of the medication to help her out.   We'll see how this goes for the next few weeks.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Reading Now...

I had really wanted to make a goal of writing more.  More on the kids, what's going on with me and especially about the changes I hope to see in my walk with God.  Three books that I have decided to read (two on my own, one referred by a friend) are going to be my focus in the next few weeks or months.  I'm hoping to share what I see happen with the thought that maybe someone will read it and find encouragement or be inspired.

The first is The Purpose Driven Life.  I've begun it and read a "day" every few days.  It helps me to remember my Christian up-bringing and yet has so many thoughts for how I can grow.

I am doing another journal on line for 1000 Gifts.  I purchased Ann Voskamp's devotional a few days ago and I love the 2-3 page devotionals as she writes on all kinds of different graces.  It's peaceful and easy to read, especially if I don't have a whole lot of alone time.

The last one was recommended to me by a friend.  It's called Keeping Our Children's Hearts.  We are at a delicate stage of life with two of our children and I need to try to make sure they continue to follow Jesus.  I need to help them through the tough days with a Christ-like attitude and this book has some great thoughts and ideas.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Thankful Thursday {01.17.13}

1. Simple things such as the incredible blossoming of Sarah's talking.  Some of her latest phrases include "Pat-a-Cake", "Kinkle, Little 'tar", "So, what's new?", and my favorite from last night (after I asked her to be nice to me) "Don't tell me 'dat Mom."  The last one was accompanied by a tiny finger wagging in my face.  Oh, how to teach her to not talk back while laughing at her quirks is going to be quite the task.

2.  Yesterday during our math time, Joshua "got it"!  I am so excited and proud of him.  He just began working with triangles and using the Pythagorean Theorem and it finally all made sense to him.  I hope this is the beginning of some enjoyment of school for him.

3.  I am so appreciative of my travelling husband.  He works long hours and spends at least one night a week (sometimes more) away from home.  I am very thankful that he enjoys what he does and that this job allows him to do what he loves best: drive.

4.  I am thankful for my home and the help from friends to make it look better.  Hopefully this weekend we can do some priming on the walls and think about painting.

5.  I am grateful for each morning that I wake up to greet the day.  That I can spend each moment with people I love and care for.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Weekend Work

Well, most of the walls in the house are now spattered with large amounts of drywall mud.  One of Doug's good friends does house renovations on the side and this weekend blessed us with many hours of help.  He brought the right tools and the 'know-how' to get the job done right.  I know it will look worse before it gets better but I am looking forward to when the walls are free of marks with a fresh coat of paint on them.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Busy day ahead

When we moved into this house three years ago, the previous owners left the walls full of the holes where they had hung up their pictures.  And they had A LOT!  Add to it, our own hangings, plus the damage done (intentionally or not) by the kids.  Pressure mounted baby gates are really hard on the inexpensive paint that was used and a few other things that were done without a whole lot of thought before we lived here.

Today we are having a friend of ours come and help Doug fill in some of the holes and prep the walls for priming and painting.  Although I love painting, one little quirk of this place is that the doors and baseboard trim are painted in a caramel color.  This means that painting the walls any other color than neutrals isn't going to happen.  Note to self... if we ever move, check what color the doors are.  Yes, I know I could paint the doors and trim back to white but that sounds like a huge job and I'd rather stick with painting walls.

Anyhow.  We'll see how the day plays out.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Monday, January 7, 2013

Back to Routine

As homeschoolers, our daily schedule is more flexible than others.  We took an extended Christmas break and in that time, took a trip to Calgary, baked cookies, went visiting, celebrated Christmas, had the flu run rampant through our home, did some major cleaning and purging and a whole lot of other things that I can't quite remember.

The kids are all well over half way through their math curriculums and so now we can take a more relaxed approach to that and add in some fun social and history as well as some science studies.

So, on that note, I'm off to get the older two out of bed and get this week started!

Friday, January 4, 2013

One Year Ago...

We had Sarah's blood work done a year ago today.  You can read about that adventure HERE.  We were initially told it would take 9-12 months to get the results of the genetics testing.  When we asked the pediatrician, he was quick to inform us that we shouldn't hold our breath and that *maybe* we'd hear something in the spring.  So we wait.  And wait.

A Little Change...

I have decided to create a new place to write about the 1000 Gifts.  It will be found HERE.  I wanted to keep my journalling blog separate from the Gifts one.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

1000 Gifts {#1}

I read this blog this morning ---> A Holy Experience and would like to make that my blog's focus for 2013.  Oddly, I can't write as well on paper but when I have a keyboard in front of me, the words just seem to come pouring out. 

I'll do a combination of writing and photos and I'm hoping to use my good camera more than my phone this year. 

So here goes! 

January 1: Three gifts heard: the voices of my children, a whispered "I love you" from my husband, and the familiar text tone that is unique to my sister.

January 2: A gift outside, inside, and on a plate:  the snow glittering in the sun, fleece bedsheets and the abundant meal I shared with my in laws.

January 3: Three graces you've overheard: I am a good wife.  I am a good mom.  I am doing well at what I do. 
*Grace defined as: "The Grace of God expresses itself as a combination of many attributes of God, especially mercy, goodness, compassion, and love."*

Well, there's the first nine, since I needed to get caught up from the past two days.  

If you'd like to follow my journey, feel free to join the Joy Dare Collection. 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Daybook {01.01.13}


For today: January 1, 2013

Out my window: 
Snow blankets our world in a white wonderland.  The temperatures have been relatively mild and quite tolerable.

I am wearing:
Comfy cotton pants and an oversized sweatshirt.

From the kitchen:
Steaks are on the counter and maybe I can convince my amazing husband to barbeque them for supper.

Around the house:
Christmas has come and gone.  In fact, I took down the tree on the 27th simply because I like things tidy, plain and organized.  I just prefer it this way.

All Things NewThe Purpose Driven Life and I still read Goodnight Little Pookie.  Every.  Single.  Night.

Looking forward to:
I'm excited to see what the new year brings.  I'm not one for resolutions but I do think of things I'd like to change or improve on.  I'll save that for another day though.

“Trusting God completely means having faith that He knows what is best for your life. You expect Him to keep His promises, help you with problems, and do the impossible when necessary.”
“God intentionally allows you to go through painful experiences to equip you for ministry to others.”
― Rick WarrenThe Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth am I Here for?

What God has in His plans for me this year.  I am ready to see what changes I can make and how He will use me.

Our family is making a big decision in the next little while.  I can't share it in detail yet but I am praying that what we decide is the right thing to do for all of us.

A peek into my day:

Looks like I'll be snuggling a little girlie who doesn't feel too good.

Happy 2013!


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