Thursday, July 31, 2008


I was taking a bit of a bloggy break this week, but I wanted to take a moment to update those who may have been praying for my neighbor's baby.

Baby Matthew passed away quietly in his loving mother's arms on Monday, July 28. He was such a little fighter. They told M & J that he would only last for 2 days, but they got to have him for almost 2 weeks. It was still much too short of a time, but long enough for him to be loved enough for a lifetime. He was 10.5 pounds at birth, and his daddy said he would have been a linebacker. He had blond hair and blue eyes, like his mommy. He will be greatly missed by his Mom, Dad, family and friends.

M is doing okay, about as good as you can expect for a Mother who has lost her baby. She is eating and sleeping, which is good considering her health issues. She is grief stricken, but she knows that her baby is in a better place. I pray constantly that her heart heals someday. I wish that I could find a way to ease her pain, even just a little. But I know that is impossible. Only time and God can do that. J seems strong, but incredibly sad and a bit angry too. The hospital and doctors won't give them a straight answer about what happened. They never do. I found that out with my first DD. But M & J will get through this together. He even spoke of them maybe trying to have another baby, someday. They deserve to be happy and to be parents. They are wonderful people.

Thank you all for your prayers. M & J knew that so many people were praying for them. They felt it, and that makes all the difference in the world when you are in a situation like that. Prayer has great power, and God is good in ways beyond our understanding.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Hubby's vacation!

My DH is taking his last pre-baby vacation time this week, starting with a work from home day tomorrow. YAY! His next vacation will be a working vacation (he'll be working for me, ha ha!!!) in December after the baby is born to help me get back on my feet. We are going to take advantage of his time off now and the warm weather to enjoy some good old-fashioned family fun, so I will probably be a little scarce this week on my blog.

Thank you all for your kind words! Baby Matthew is thankfully still holding his own in NICU, although he has not improved. I appreciate all of your thoughts and your tolerance of my rants.

Have a GREAT week! I plan to.........


First of all, Baby Matthew is still hanging in there even though the doctors told my neighbor and her hubby that he wouldn't last long at all and they should prepare for the worst. I am praying, praying, praying for this little baby. He is a fighter.

Second of all, I have been wandering around wondering what I could do to help my neighbor. Her and her hubby are staying at the hospital about 50 miles away. Because of the baby's medical situation, I would not be allowed to go back and visit him. And my going there to visit her would mean that she would have to come out and see me. She rarely leaves the baby's side, so expecting her to leave him to come out and see me just seems a tad inconsiderate on my part. So I've ruled out a visit. Her family is helping to care for their house while M & J are away at the hospital, so I really can't do that either. I was feeling like there wasn't much that I could do to let her know that I am thinking of them while they are gone.

Yesterday, I walked over to their house to pick up the local paper in their driveway and flyer on their door. I've been doing that because I don't want it to look like no one is home. When I went up on the front porch, I noticed that her flowers in her flower pots were dying. No one had been watering them. My neighbor M is a huge flower fan and vegetable gardener just like I am. Her flowers dying would be a bad thing. So I am going to water them for her and look over her pretty flower beds while she is away. Her Dad has been coming over to mow the lawn but he also wants to get back to the hospital to be with the family, so he hasn't been tending her flowers the way that M would. So I will be sneaking over to pull the weeds, water the flowers and such. No one ever needs to know that it was me, and this way she won't come home to a big mess. I think that I am also going to go back to her veggie garden and spruce it up a bit (a veggie garden left untended quickly goes bad), and maybe plant her fall crops for her. I'm going to stick with the easy ones for her to tend to and harvest: carrots, peas, beans, and such.

We both love our flowers and vegetables. I know that this probably seems like a silly little thing to most people, but I am hoping that this is something that I can do to help put a little bit of normal back into her life when she gets home. No big garden chores for her to catch up on, and flowers and vegetables waiting for her return. I know that it's not much, but I hope that it helps.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Please forgive me if my posts are not very happy for a bit. I am angry, and I want to let this anger go before I see my neighbor. I need to be supportive for her. It is her grief, not mine, and I do not want to make her feel worse by not controlling my own emotions. She needs love and support, not a stark raving lunatic pregnant woman who is pissed off because she views this tragedy as something that might have been prevented if the doctor had been a little less concerned about keeping his c-section rate down.

But I am angry. Very very Angry. I feel like they killed her baby, even though baby Matthew is still fighting for his life in NICU right now. My neighbor had no problem with delivering via c-section. All that she wanted was a healthy baby, and she didn't care how she delivered it. She knew that her diabetes made this baby a miracle for her, and she accepted the fact that it may be her only child. She didn't want to take any chances. She was in one of the best hospitals in the area, and not just our immediate area but in the entire state. Top notch care. Top notch care that kept a diabetic woman flat on her back in labor, hooked up to IVs and monitors, without real food and only ice chips to drink. But hey, she might have had the chance for a "normal delivery". Because a normal delivery always includes cervidil, pitocin, IVs, and being totally stuck in bed with a catheter. Yeah. I'm pissed that they treated her this way only to have her baby most likely die.

I have to make a disclaimer here. I am not anti-"normal" delivery. Although I am admittedly not it's biggest fan, I know plenty of women who had happy and healthy normal deliveries. But I am totally against what birth has become in a hospital setting. I have a friend who is a delivery room nurse. She said that pitocin is the most frequently used drug in the labor room, even during low risk deliveries. She said "Watch 'The Business of Being Born'. It really is accurate." She is not an advocate of home births, but more of birthing centers within a hospital setting with lots of midwives present. She is a big advocate of natural birth and not sticking a healthy laboring mother in bed with a pit bag. She is also a big advocate of not inducing a high risk mother. She has seen her fair share of "quiet births", and according to her most of the babies who died during the actual labor or delivery were attempts at inducing high risk mothers to deliver vaginally when their bodies weren't ready and couldn't take it. Her personal opinion is that scheduled c-sections should be used in high-risk cases, and natural delivery methods should be attempted with healthy mothers and babies. She also said that you never forget the screams of a mother who lost her baby unexpectedly during delivery.

My other disclaimer: I am not a doctor. I'm not giving any medical advice here, so please don't take it as such! I am just a pregnant mom with a friend who is losing a baby in a way that just seems so senseless and preventable to me.

I'm glad that women are pushing back on the medical establishment. We do need to take back our births. But we have to be careful not to go too far. Women and babies used to die during childbirth. Alot. I am thankful that we have technology to help prevent this. We need to be careful, though, to make sure that doctors don't use us as lab rats to prove that they try to keep their c-section rates low. C-sections do save lives. Were the c-section rates out of control for low risk mothers in years past? Absolutely! Do I think that lots of c-sections were caused by the way that hospitals confine and manipulate labor? You bet! But I also think that it is high time that the practice of induction in high risk mothers is re-evaluated. We have to STOP and think about what we put these women and babies through in order to achieve "natural" or normal vaginal births. I've been there, and I can tell you that it's not pretty. And I don't think that it is worth the risk of harm or death for the mother and baby.

These are just my thoughts. I am sure that many people will feel differently. I am going to leave my comments open, but please be nice and remember that I am not anti-vaginal birth, anti-home birth, or anti-hospital birth. There is a BALANCE out there, somewhere, where high risk mothers can get the attention that they need and where low risk mothers can avoid the meddling that often occurs in hospital settings today. I just long to find that balance. I think that it will save lives and give us our births back.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Please pray.......

If you feel so inclined, please pray for baby Matthew and his Mom and Dad. You can read the story in the post below this one. Thank you.


My neighbor and I have been pregnant together for the past 4 months. She was due July 25th, but she is a type 1 Diabetic and the baby was getting too large so they induced her. After 18 horrible hours of labor she was finally able to start pushing, but the baby's heart stopped during delivery. They weren't able to get her in for the emergency c-section fast enough, so the baby was deprived of oxygen for 15 minutes. They revived him, but it is not good....... My neighbor, who would have made a wonderful mother, is staying by her dying baby's side until the end. She won't even come home to change clothes or shower. My heart hurts so bad for her. I cannot imagine her pain.

I just found this out today. I knew that they hadn't been home for well over a week, and I knew that she was high risk so I have been very very worried. But I never expected this. I just wanted to see her get out of her car with her new baby in her arms. I wanted to sit in our driveway together and watch out babies play. I wanted to invite her over to our pool so that her baby could have it's first swim with mine. Now I can't do anything with her or for her except cry the tears that only a mother can cry for another mother who is losing her child. And pray. I have never felt pain like what she is going through right now, but I know the love that I feel for my children. Even the thought of losing them rips my heart out of my chest. I just cannot imagine what she is going through right now, a time of her life that was supposed to be so happy.

I am angry for her. I had awful pre-eclampsia when I was pregnant with my oldest DD. The induced me, just like they did my neighbor. I had over 18 hours of labor. pushing was horrible, and my baby got stuck with the cord wrapped around her neck 2 times. A pair of forcepts later (along with a major episiotomy, detached bladder, and various other physical harms done to me in the process) and my sweet little baby was pulled out silent, limp, and blue. They revived her, and she had not been that way long so my little blue baby is now a normal and healthy 10 year old. We were very very lucky. But this all could have been prevented if they would have given me a scheduled c-section instead of inducing me. The neighbor two doors down from us had a similar story (pre-eclampsia and induction), except they had to rush her in for an emergency c-section and the baby had been without oxygen for a bit longer. He is now physically normal but mentally behind his peers. I hear stories like this and it rips my heart out. We were all mothers with serious complications. Why, if the baby needed to come out, did they induce us? Why not just give us a scheduled c-section? We were not "normal healthy pregnancies". We were high risk. Yes, some doctors would consider my story a success. But was it? Is it stories like mine that keep these doctors pushing high risk mothers to attempt a vaginal delivery? I just wish that I could understand why they do this. My neighbor's baby probably wouldn't be dying in the hospital right now if they just would have given her the darn scheduled C!!! Now she ended up with a c-section anyway and a dying baby on top of it. Her body will heal, but her heart will always carry the pain. I'm just so mad. And sad. I can't type anymore.

Love is.....

telling your hubby about your giant bag of liquified potatoes in the trunk of your car, watching him laugh uproariously, and then having him hug you and say "That's why I love you, honey. You keep life interesting."

After all that, he went out and double checked the car just to make sure I didn't forget anything on THIS shopping trip. :)

Marriage = a constant series of checks and balances.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Let's play "Name that Smell"!

There are some things that happen to you that you can only tell a spouse or a trusted friend or relative. There are some things that you can only talk about on the semi-anonymity of your blog. Well, I am going to do both, but my blog readers get to hear about it first because I was much too embarrassed to tell my dear sweet hubby about it last night.

My regular readers (all 4 of you, lol!) may remember me talking about my Neon having a particular smell to it about a week ago or so. Well, after that post I took all of my junk out of it, opened the windows, steam cleaned it a bit, and used some febreeze. Problem solved, or so I thought. It's been pretty hot here (finally) over the last few days, so I've been staying out of my Neon with no air conditioning and just staying home. But a family has to eat, so a grocery store trip was inevitable. I opened the door to that little car yesterday and WOW! I knew something was wrong, wrong, wrong. My children started begging me not to make them ride in the car. "Please mommy can we take the Blazer? Please?!?! It has air conditioning and it doesn't smell." Yes folks, it was that bad. But the Blazer is out of service right now. (Bad driver's side door. It was flying open when I turned. Hubby fixed it to stay shut until the parts come in and we can take it to the shop but now you have to get in on the passenger side and climb over the center console in order to drive it. Not fun at 20 weeks pregnant!) I am blessed with two very good little girls who rarely cry or pout. I'm not bragging - they are a gift from God that I feel I had very little to do with. But when they really put up a fuss about something I know that it is bad. And they were almost crying. "Mommy it smells so bad! What is wrong with the Neon? I hate this car!"

So, stuck with the knowledge that I have to get groceries but the car really smells, I did what any normal woman with pregnancy hormones REALLY kicking in would do. I opened the hood. Maybe some animal crawled up inside the engine at some point, I reasoned. Hey, it's happened before, right? But I found nothing except some oil. So then I thought "maybe the girls dropped something in the back seat that I didn't find before". Right. So we checked the back seat, under the front seats, etc. etc. Nothing. By then I was hot, hungry, and in need of something to cook my hubby for dinner so I told the girls that we had NO CHOICE. We had to take the smelly car and go get food. They sighed, got in, and rolled down their windows. I sighed, got in, and said a little prayer that the good Lord would have mercy on my stomach during the short trip to the store. We all stuck our heads out of the windows while I drove much faster than I usually do to the store. I'm sure there is a therapy bill in my children's future after that car trip.

After what seemed like the longest 1 mile trip of my entire life, we finally arrived at the store. The girls tried to convince me to allow them to leave the windows open so that the car could air out, but I just couldn't do that to the poor innocent people parked next to me. I tried and tried to figure out what was wrong with my stinky car while we were inside shopping, and I intentionally made the trip take a little longer because I didn't want to go back and sit in that car. I felt like I was living a real life version of Seinfeld's "Smelly Car" episode.

Our shopping was finally finished and it was time to head out to the car. I sent the girls to go sit in the car and wait while I unloaded the groceries into the trunk. More future therapy bills, I'm sure. I popped open the trunk and was greeted by a smell worse than than I could ever imagine. The trunk!! Why didn't I think of that before!?! I knew that I had to be a big girl and try to locate the source of the stench, without being too obvious to my fellow shoppers that I was having issues. As I rummaged around in my way-to-filled-with-junk trunk, I felt something wet in a bag. Oh no! Did my trunk leak too now? Noooooo....I couldn't get that lucky. Apparently some time ago on a shopping trip that I don't remember I bought a big bag of potatoes and forgot about them. I'll spare you all the details about what happens to a forgotten bag of potatoes locked up in a trunk for half of the summer. But I scanned the parking lot looking for a hidden dumpster where I could secretly dump the source of my smelly woes. Of course, no such luck. So I removed some of my groceries from a shopping bag, dumped the nasty bag in the extra bag, tied it really tightly, and put it back in my trunk. (Yes, I was desperate but not desperate enough to just leave it sitting there in the parking lot.) I got into the car and told the girls that it was going to be alright - Mommy was going to fix the smelly car. Yay!!! I drove home as fast as I could and unloaded the groceries. I grabbed the dripping wet bag of former potatoes and started walking toward my back gate to throw them into the garbage can when I heard my neighbor saying "Hi!" from the sidewalk. Murphy's Law. So I stood there with a dripping bag of smelly former potatoes and talked to her for a few moments about how I'm feeling and when I'm due until I just couldn't take it any more. I finally 'fessed up, apologised, and told her that I had to run back to my garbage can. We had a great laugh together when I came back out front, especially when she told me about the carton of eggs that got away in her minivan one time. I guess it can happen to anyone.....

But at least my car doesn't smell anymore. I checked first thing this morning.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Cleaning and Running

My parents are coming out for a visit again tomorrow. (My Dad doesn't seem to think that I should be sitting in a car for over 90 minutes while I'm pregnant to come out to visit them, so they keep driving out here. I'm so glad that they are still over-protective even though I am 34 years old now. LOL!) So I have to get the house clean and do my grocery shopping today. I'm hoping to have it all done before this afternoon so my kiddos can go swimming. It's going to be over 90 degrees here today, so we want to go swimming while the swimming is good!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

At the risk of T.M.I...........

I hate to get into the whole "too much information" problem on this blog o'mine, but I could use some input from other "Moms who have been there". I ALWAYS have a problem with iron supplements when I am pregnant. If I don't take iron supplements, I get anemia. If I even take a little bit of iron I get, um, unproductive. (I'm sure you Moms know what I mean!!) I can't even bear to take my prenatal vitamin because it has 90(!!!!) mg of iron. My ob says I'll be fine because it "has a stool softener" so I need to take it. But it made me sick. Really, really sick. Like Hubby thought that he had to take me to the hospital sick one night because I was in pain from being, um, unproductive for a number of days and then my body painfully corrected itself all night long. (I know, TMI. Sorry. Iron just makes me really sick when I am pregnant.) So I switched to my normal One-A-Day that I take (without problems, I must add!) when I am not pregnant and a folic acid supplement. Still sick, though not as bad as with the pre-natal. I got sick of the constant cramps so I switched to my kiddos children's vitamin that has no iron in it. Now I am fine, but my ob is not happy at all and insists that I must take the pre-natal in order to have a healthy baby and that I am absolutely not bothered by iron during pregnancy because my body needs it. (I guess that I just imagined all those intestinal cramps.) So I am torn. I feel fine as long as I DON'T TAKE my pre-natal or regular vitamin. I am in horrible pain with it. My ob said I just have to "let my body get used to it". I must stress, this is not the first time this has happened. It happened with both of my other pregnancies too. I just didn't take any vitamins either time and still gave birth to happy, healthy babies.

Has anyone else had this problem? I was going to try to be good this time and suffer through the pre-natal vitamins, but my body just revolts. I have the whole "mommy guilt" thing going on, and my ob has just made me feel worse by almost implying that it is impossible for someone to have problems with iron during pregnancy. But not going to the bathroom for days just plain hurts. Again, sorry for TMI. I have a friend who is an RN and she said to just stop taking the pre-natals and take what doesn't make me sick. Anyway, has anyone else ever had this problem, and if so what did you do??

Grocery Game vs. Super Walmart

Ok, first I have to get this off of my chest. Walmart is evil. There, I said it. That being said, I still shop there. We live less than a mile away, and at $4.29 a gallon for gas closer just wins sometimes. After Super Walmart, the next closest stores are Target and Dominicks (Safeway for some of you). Those stores are just too expensive! Then comes my local Jewel. Here's where it gets interesting for me.

The Walmart Supercenter has consistent low prices. They take coupons but they never double and they never have sales. None of my local stores double, actually. That's the disadvantage of living in an area where they decided some time ago that we were "booming" and they could make money off of us. We're definitely not booming anymore, we're slowly busting due to the housing bubble bust and the tough economy. So I am hoping that at least one store will go back to double coupons. But for now I have Jewel. I have again started saving ALL of my coupons from both papers that I get. (Our local Sunday paper and our big city Sunday paper) Most of the time, Jewel has a "buy one get one free" sale on selected items. You CAN use a coupon on the second free item, so I can usually end up getting a pretty good deal on lots of stuff.

I am not really good about sitting down with the paper and comparing my coupons to the sale prices. That is why I have re-subscribed to "The Grocery Game". For a small subscription fee, the grocery game tells me EXACTLY what I should buy to get the best deals with my coupons. I know, I know. Paying money to save money sounds a little silly. For those of you who don't want to pay, I hear the Coupon Mom ( has a similar service for free. But I like not having to think about it and having an instant printable list for my store that I can customize if I want to, so I pay the fee. (It's only about $10 for 3 months and I more than make up for it as long as I follow the system.)

I know some ladies in the area who shop only at the Walmart Supercenter. I just can't do that. Walmart doesn't always have what I want and I am just not fond of all of their meats. So what works for me is to buy my non-sale items at Walmart, (preferably with a coupon), and shop the sales with The Grocery Game at Jewel. I also occasionally hit Aldi and I shop at Food4Less instead of Walmart when the girls are in school. Food4Less actually has better prices than Walmart, but they are about 7 miles up the road on my way to and from school. It sounds silly, but I hate to drive that far when I'm not already on my way like I am when I drop the kids off at school.

And I am still holding out on ordering The Couponizer. I am so proud of myself! I keep hoping that I can find my old beloved coupon organizer, and that is what keeps me strong.

Monday, July 14, 2008

But I want it!!!!

I have to tell you all, I am not usually the kind of person who just has to have something. For example, both of the cars that I drive are fully paid off. They are a bit old (2001), but not that old and they are still in good shape. Well, the Blazer is anyway, and the Neon at least still runs. Our goal was always to drive them until they stopped running or fell apart, because we are cheap. But I know that I am going to need a new car (minivan, most likely) shortly after the baby gets here because neither the Blazer nor the Neon is going to give us enough room to be comfortable. But I don't want a car payment because I AM CHEAP!! And I am happy with what I have even though I know the cars won't work for my family anymore very soon. So the thought of getting a new car, which usually makes people very very happy, actually makes me quite sad.

Why am I talking about this? Because I can't figure out for the life of me why I want "The Couponizer" so badly that I am willing to shell out $20.00 for a product that is supposed to help me save money when I can't bear to get a new car that I will actually need. Talk about silly, huh? I used to have a very nice cloth "billfold" type of coupon organizer back when I was still regularly using coupons. Somehow, I lost it. (It's in the house somewhere, I just know it!!) I just hate having stacks and stacks of unorganized coupons laying around the house, because I never use them when that happens. Then I saw "The Couponizer" over at "Money Saving Mom", and I was hooked! I keep having to talk myself out of ordering it. I have done Internet searches to see if I can find a coupon code to help bring down the price. (I did!!) I bought a cheap cardboard organizer at the grocery store for $3.99 to try to stop my lustful thoughts, but I remain unfulfilled. Do I miss my old coupon organizer so much that I need to fill the void, or am I utterly smitten with the flashiness of the couponizer?? I just don't know anymore, but I am a woman obsessed.

So if any of you have The Couponizer, can you please let me know what it is really like before I go to that website while clutching my debit card in my sweaty little hand. I am desperately close to blowing $20 on it, especially after my favorite frugal column in my local paper mentioned it as being "The Holy Grail" of coupon organizers yesterday. (It felt like a conspiracy!) My resolve is crumbling. Really folks, I am a woman on the brink. Please, somebody, STOP ME!!!!!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Speaking in Tongues

Wow! I have been a bit religious lately, huh? Maybe it is because my garden is having it's worst year that I can remember so I have been praying over it alot. LOL!

But anyway, I have mentioned before that I love MZEllen's blog. She has a great post up there now concerning the 2 different forms of speaking in tongues, complete with a new term that I had never heard of before: xenoglossy. My own explanation of her post would not do it any justice, so if you are interested in this topic I urge you to go take a look at MZEllen's blog and read it for yourself.

Have a great weekend! I have a busy one coming up so I am not sure if I'll be back here before Monday.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A question for some of my readers

I had this thought while I was pondering why I thought that the comment below from one of the "Keeping the Home" blog readers was so silly and why I have such a problem with the attack on the Catholic Church for previously using Latin at Masses before the language was switched to the vernacular.

Here is the comment:
"I remember going over to a high school friend's house one time. Her mother was getting together mementoes for their 20th Anniversary party, and one of them was the bible she carried as a RC bride. My own mother carried her bible, too, and I thought it was sweet. This lady opened it to show her wedding inscription, and I was shocked to find that her bible was in Latin! I asked if she read Latin, and she said no, but their services were performed in Latin so the bible she carried was, as well. I remember that being one of the first times I noticed something wasn't OK with that church.

It's hard to imagine having a holy book you can't read."

And here is my question: Why is it wrong for Catholics to use Latin because "no one can understand it" but is it ok for some Christians to speak in tongues without a translator present? I just do not understand this contradiction. Candy has mentioned speaking in tongues before as being biblical. I quote from her blog post on Tuesday July 1, 2008: "Speaking in tongues is not speaking repetitive gibberish, it is simply one's speaking a different language, which they never learned. That different language is not necessarily limited to currently spoken languages - dead languages have been resurrected and spoken by tongues, as well as languages that have not been identified. " (Emphasis my own) I guess I just don't understand why it is ok for some Christians to use unknown languages in worship but wrong for Catholics to use a "dead language" for which the translation is still available. Am I missing something here? Any thoughts from my readers??

Updated July 15, 2008
** I updated this post to include the phrase "Christians" instead of Evangelicals like I originally used. I don't want to lump all Protestant Christians together because I know that not all branches practice speaking in tongues during either public or private worship, but I am really blown away by all of the different branches of Christianity and I can't seem to find the right word to use here. Please excuse my ignorance on the subject. I guess that's why I need to ask my readers for some insight. :) **

Another comment that I am sure won't get posted

over at Keeping the Home:

"In response to the comment above about the Latin Bible, I feel it necessary to mention that my MIL also has a Bible written in Latin. She went to Catholic High School before the language was switched to the vernacular and Latin was a required course. Although she is not fluent in Latin, especially now after almost 40 years, she was able to understand some of her Latin Bible. She also told me that her Latin Bible was NEVER her only bible. She, in fact, has many including a KJV.

Yes, it was standard for the Catholic Church to conduct all of their services in Latin before Vatican II. This HAS changed, and I think it is important for readers of this blog to understand that. I have been to a Latin (Tridentine) Mass and have found it beautiful despite the fact that I only took two semesters of Latin Derivatives my senior year of high school and could understand very little. It is possible to find beauty and spirituality in a service that is not in your native tongue.

My mother has a bible that is written in German. It is a family heirloom that has a brief family history and our family tree written on the inside cover as it was passed down through my family. I cannot read German, although I can understand some spoken German. If we were to go on the theory that the only Bible worth keeping or carrying with you on your wedding day is one that you could read, I would have to toss this precious family heirloom in the trash.

Have a blessed day."

***Updated to add: I am in utter SHOCK. She actually published my comment!! Well, I do have to give her credit on this one.***

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Busy day...

I don't have much time to blog today. I had to go for blood tests (routine for me, for my thyroid, nothing serious) this morning, and I unfortunately had to have them done at the local hospital so it took much more time than I would have preferred. Tonight, I have to go to a committee meeting for our school's "Family Fest" and I have to get all of my stuff together for the meeting. I also have to clean out our Neon. (It leaks when it rains, and the passenger floor board gets soaked. I forgot to open the windows to let it air out after the big storms that we had been having a week or so ago. Words cannot describe the stifling and smelly air that greeted me when I got in the car this morning. What a pleasant start to my day. LOL!) I have to clean the house because my parents are coming over this weekend. And I have to get my kiddos ready to go over to the neighbors tonight so that I can go to my meeting because hubby has a "team building" meeting tonight that will go on past the time when I would need him to be here to watch the kids. (He hates those "team building" things, but he has to go.)

Whew! I better get started.

Oh - my garden tip for the day: Don't foget to weed regularly otherwise you will face the daunting weeding task that I also have ahead of me today. Lazy lazy me.

My money saving tip of the day: Well, I have been trying not to drive much at all since my kiddos have been out of school and I haven't had to drive across town twice a day every day. That really saves some money, lol! But if you have a car that leaks when it rains, DON'T forget to open the windows after it rains if you aren't driving as much. Trust me, it's a very bad thing if you forget to do that. :)

Have a great day!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

I wasn't going to post this....

But now I am going to, since Candy has published her answers but didn't acknowledge my questions:

Candy over at Keeping the Home has opened up her comment section for questions that some of her readers may have regarding certain controversies about her blog. The back story for those who aren't familiar with it is a bit too long to explain here. But just trust me when I say that it is very helpful to save a copy of all of the comments that you leave on her blog just in case they get, um, "lost" or they don't get published but she responds to them publicly.

So here is my comment, just in case:

Candy, I have two questions that I am hoping that you could answer honestly. The first question is: when will you stop attacking the Catholic faith? It is one thing to disagree with the theology. It is quite another to post claims on your blog and call them truth when they can (and have) been proven as lies. You are completely entitled to have your own beliefs and spread the Gospel. But I do not understand why you feel compelled to resort to slander against another group of Christians. You don't have to agree with what the Catholic Church teaches, but you don't have to demonize it with outrageous claims either. THAT is why some of your Catholic readers felt like they had to start a blog. It was in response to your claims against Catholicism and your unwillingness to allow comments about your RC posts refuting your claims, not because they hate you and wanted to spread lies about you.

I also hope that you take a moment and clarify for your readers that Elena and the other ladies on her blog try very very hard to stick with only refuting your claims against Catholicism and not go into personal attacks.

My second question is: I have read on several different blogs that you posted an aerial view of Elena's home. Is this true? I found this very disturbing and, honestly, shockingly unkind and un-Christian. Why did you do this? Let's strip away the Catholic-Protestant controversy and just look at the potential harm that action could have done to another woman and her family. I don't understand why you would ever think it was ok to do that. When I learned that you did that to her and her family (and read confirmation of the event from several different sources), that was when you lost a great deal of credibility in my eyes.

Thank you very much for taking the time to answer some of the questions that your readers may have. Have a blessed day!

I corrected a spelling error in the last paragraph, but other than that this comment is exactly as I sent it.

Really, I have so many questions for her. For example, why does she not allow Catholic commenter's to have their comments published? Why does she not publish some comments but then respond to them publicly, allowing her readers to only get one side of the story. I have so many more, but I figured I had a better chance of getting published if I kept it simple. So let's see what happens.....
Well, now we know what happened,
Just curious, but is there a reason why you decided not to respond to my question about why you posted a view of Elena's home on your blog?

But the real question is: Will I be banned from her comments now?

**Updated to add**
And now she took down the comments from the responses to critics post. ARRRRGGHHHH!

Monday, July 07, 2008

Garden Progress

It's hard for me to believe that July 4th has come and gone. That means that summer here starts it's long slow progression into fall. Is that a "glass half empty" way of looking at it? Yeah, kind of. But in reality I have to view the season that way because it is really time for me to get my franny in gear and start focusing on my fall crops. When planning a multi-season garden, you always have to look AHEAD as well as focusing on the present. It's only with careful planning that you can have a successful multi-season garden.

Here is what I am harvesting so far:
spinach (going to seed now, though.)

And that's about it so far. But it will get better. Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, green peppers, and tomatoes are all starting to grow beautifully. It's just a matter of time......

I am also renewing my pledge to be a more frugal shopper. With the baby coming, food and gas prices prices soaring, and tuition at my girlies school going WAY up, I have to try to save as much as possible. I plan on adding more frugal links to my blog and updating everyone on my progress. I used to be pretty good at this, but I am out of practice. Our family could use this help now more than ever....

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

The Fourth of July

My neighborhood goes crazy with fireworks on the Fourth of July. And on the 3rd, and the 5th, and pretty much the whole entire week before and week after the 4th of July. I HATE HATE HATE IT. I much prefer the professional fireworks that are set off by all of the local towns and cities in our area. I thought, judging by the amount of fireworks set off, that I was alone in my torment each year until I found this on this wonderful blog. Fourth of July Fuddy-Duddies unite! I just want to know - whatever happened to simply having a patriotic BBQ and going to see the fireworks?? It was so much more relaxing back then. I just got over having to hold my poor frightened children and rock them to sleep every July 4th. (They think it's cool now that they are over the age of 5.) Now I have to go through it all over again and deal with a dog scaredy-dog and irritated cats at the same time. It's just not fun for the rest of us. And why oh why do they have to keep lighting them off at 1 AM??

Ok, preggy-rant over........

Some Heavy Summer Reading

**Warning: I am going to stray into a politically charged issue with this post. I usually don't do this. But it all ties into certain things that happened and are happening in my own life. So please forgive me for going here. Read if you like, feel free to click past this post if you don't.

When I was in college, I was what I shall call "Pro-other people's choice". Abortion was something that I would never do myself, however I felt that another woman should have the option in the first trimester if she needed to. My argument for this was things such as rape and incest. I personally could not imagine having to carry and deliver a baby conceived in such a way. (As an aside, I still cannot. This feeling has only intensified as I have carried and delivered my own children that were conceived in love, not hate, violence, or selfishness. I still struggle with this aspect because I am not perfect. I pray about this conflict constantly. But I do believe that a mother who bears a child conceived in this manner rather than abort is simply the most loving and selfless person that I could ever imagine.) I argued that if you make abortion legal for only those circumstances such as rape and incest, the process of proving the case for the abortion would delay the woman from receiving care in an a prompt time frame. I was TOTALLY opposed to abortion as birth control, but totally opposed to making a woman suffer for crimes committed against her. Ah, to be young and in a liberal arts college!!!

Fast forward to my marriage to my Catholic husband and my first pregnancy. I had always thought that the Catholic view of birth control and pro-life issues was something like what my mother had always told me: "They just want you to make more Catholics". Yep, it sure sounded like it on the surface. Then I started getting more interested in Catholicism and started reading the real views of the Catholic Church. It was SO MUCH MORE than that! Then came my pregnancy and my sudden, life-changing realization that the baby growing inside of me was it's own life as important as my own. My heart started changing. It ached for the babies who's mothers aborted them for no reason other than they found out that they became pregnant when they didn't want to. I went from being "pro-other people's choice" to being more pro-life. In fact, the Catholic Church's view on life issues is one of the things that first attracted me to the faith and started me on my journey to conversion.

I strongly recommend that people of all faiths read John Paul II's "Theology of the Body" writings or one of the companion books ("Theology" is some heavy reading! There are some great companion books out there that help break it down.) It was life changing for me. I cannot touch bases on all of the topics that are covered in the Catholic view of life, but this book brings it all into perspective in a way that I feel crosses over into all denominations. I was able to see how all aspects of life tie together, cannot be seperated, and influence everything. Ok, I am not doing this justice in trying to explain it in my own words. Please consider exploring this on your own! It is worth every minute that you spend reading it. *If anyone knows any books that you would recommend, please feel free to leave them in the comment section. I am a new Catholic and I am sure that I am not explaining this well and not listing the best books out there on the subject.

I could try to write poetically about the changes that I have gone through over the years. But this article does it so much better than I could ever dream of doing it myself. If you are interested in life issues and the Catholic perspective, consider taking a moment to read this.

Have a great Fourth of July weekend in case I am not back before then!!!