Friday, January 30, 2009

You know you're boring when .....

I used to think that my life was full of excitement, I mean rarely a day goes by that my heart rate and respiration hasn't accelerated for one reason or another. The only thing is it is usually brought on by something that my kids have done. Even I don't think reading about how my kids are driving me insane is worth it.

So I thought I would give you my thoughts on some of the news stories I have read lately.

Mother of octuplets has six other children I saw this headline this morning on and I thought it must be a mistake. This mother gave birth to only the second set of living octuplets in this country. I thought at first WOW it is going to be hard to care for that many babies. I know I was drained with just one at a time. Then I read this article and learned that she had 6 other children AND her husband is scheduled to return to Iraq soon. GOD bless her and I certainly hope that she gets lots and lots of help. This sure is stretching the saying that "GOD only gives you what you are able to handle".

Alaskan volcano set to erupt This is one of those forces of nature that amaze me. The article says that a web cam was being set up but I haven't found it yet. I hope no one is stupid enough to be too close when it does erupt. I remember pondering once, What happens once all the stuff that spues out IS out. Will the earth collapse in on itself? I mean how much stuff is really down there?

This one made me smile the title of the story is 110 year old living fossil becomes a dad. I have to admit that when I read stories like this I often imagine these animals as humans. ........"Henry's newfound libido does have some limits, however. Hazley said Juliet, a youthful 22 year old, appears to be too hot to handle for the centenarian....." How could you not put human faces onto them when you read a line like this. I read this while picturing a little, stoop over, balding man ...

Have you read any interesting news lately? Post it in the comments so everyone can see!

I have a busy weekend again coming up. Ray and I will be building rabbit cages all weekend and setting up our former "junk room, play room, storage room" into a rabbit habitat. We plan on housing the rabbit in there until Spring when we will be able to build something for them outside of the house. Right now we just can't pour concrete very well. We are going to our first show next weekend and we hope to come home with a few new members to our family. We have decided on breed called the Jersey Woolies. They are so cute and from what I have learned have a great temperament. Once the ARBA has approved our choice of names for our rabbit farm I will be setting up a web site. Until then you can check out these two sites to learn more. This is the home to ARBA. You can learn so much about rabbits from this site. This site is for just Jersey Woolies. We have been so lucky to have been in contact with very friendly breeders. Everyone so far is more then willing to help us out in our new endeavor and I want to thank them all.

Check out the sites and let me know what you think.

~Just Me

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Alphabet Soup Mom

When you are raising kids with mental health issues you get used to having your kids identified by the letters tacked on to the back of their name. ADHD, ODD, OCD ... It is very challenging when there is only one child in the house with these issues but in mine we have FIVE. Sometimes I just wonder what I did in a former life to have been sentenced to a life that revolves around their moods, doctor and therapy appointments, medication schedules ...

Every now again when I feel the "burden" of being a mom to 7 kids, 5 with mental illness, I pull up this page - have a good cry - and realize how blessed I really am. I don't know who wrote the following, but an on-line friend (who I have lost touch with) had this on her web page. I copied it down and keep it in a special file on my desk top for days like today when I start feeling a pity party coming on.


~Just Me

Some women become mothers by accident, some by choice, a few by social pressure and a couple by habit.

This year, nearly 100,000 women will become mothers of handicapped children. Did you ever wonder how mothers of handicapped children are chosen? Somehow I visualize God hovering over earth selecting His instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation.
As He observes, He instructs His angels to make notes in a giant ledger.

"Armstrong, Beth, son... Patron Saint, Matthew"

"Forrest, Marjorie, daughter...Patron Saint, Cecilia"

"Rutledge, Karen, Twins...Patron Saint...give her Gerard, he is used to profanity."

Finally, He passes a name to an angel and smiles, "Give her a handicapped child."

The angel is curious, "Why this one, God? She is so happy."

"Exactly," smiled God. "Could I give a handicapped child to a mother who does not know laughter? That would be cruel."

"But has she got patience?" asked the angel.

"I don't want her to have too much patience or she will drown in a sea of self pity and despair. Once the shock and resentment wear off, she'll handle it. I watched her today. She has that feeling of self and independence that is so rare and so necessary in a mother. You see, the child I am going to give her has his own world. She has to make the child live in her world and that is not going to be easy."

"But Lord, I don't think she even believes in You."

God smiled, "No matter. I can fix that. This one is perfect. She has just enough selfishness."

The angel gasped, "Selfishness? Is that a virtue?"

God nods. "If she can't separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive. Yes, here is a woman I will bless with a childless than perfect. She doesn't realize it yet, but she is to be envied. She will never take for granted a "spoken word." She will never consider a "step" ordinary. When her child says "Momma," for the first time, she will be present at a miracle and know it! When she describes a tree or sunset to a blind child, she will see it as few people ever see my creation. I will permit her to see clearly the things I see...ignorance, cruelty, prejudice... and allow her to rise above them. She will never be alone. I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life because she is doing My work as surely as if she were here by My side."

"And what about her Patron Saint?" asked the angel, his pen poised in mid air.

God smiles, "A mirror will suffice."

Friday, January 23, 2009

Playlist and My Big Fat BUTT


I have added a new feature to this blog page. If you look to the right and scroll down you will see a playlist. Now it is still in the BETA version so it has some bugs. These are some of the thousands of songs over the years that I played to death either on my record player or cassette tapes. I never got into the CD era - guess that really dates me. By the time CD's became all the rave I was too into raising my kids that I didn't have time for the new technology.

My kids have hundreds of CD's which now that they have MP3 players are starting to collect dust.

If you click onto one of the songs listed you will here just a snippet of the song BUT if you then click VIDEO, if there is one available you will get a mini screen and the entire song played for you to watch and listen too. For those close to my age, you will see that most of these songs are the hot hits from the 80's. This was a time in my life I refer to as BK (before kids).

I was hoping as I was making up this play list that you and I would be able to hear the songs played all the way through and start randomly when the page loaded. Guess that is something that I send to the creators as a suggestion.

I hope you enjoy these songs and the videos.

OH great news, at least I think so. I have a pretty busy weekend coming up and so I got on the scale today instead of waiting until Sunday (my normal weigh in day). I have lost another 2 1/2 pounds for a grand total so far of 12 1/2 pounds. I am so glad that it is coming off. SLOWLY but coming off. That leaves me with 42 more pounds to go to my goal weight. I REALLY want to hit my goal on or before my birthday in June.

I have been watching the TV show "THE Biggest Loser" and I have to say that I am jealous of the amount of weight that some of the contestants take off each week. Just this past Tuesday one guy lost 18 pounds (I think I got that right). I can't imagine loosing that amount of weight in one week! There is one boy, a teenager, the heaviest in the history of the show. It is painful for me to watch him. He started out at over 440 pounds and in three weeks he has lost 48 pounds!

I hope that all you that are trying to live healthier lifestyles are having success too! Give me a shout out if you too are trying to loose some weight or just live a healthier lifestyle.

~Just Me

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Worry Wart

I am a perpetual worrier! I have this horrible ability to see into the future and foresee every horrible outcome of every action that my kids and husband are about to do.

When my kids are running around the house I don't see them having fun I see that in the next minute one of them is going to trip and fall onto something that will rip open their tiny little bodies requiring thousands of stitches to stop the bleeding.

When they are walking to the end of the driveway to catch the school bus I don't see happy little children going off to school to have a day full of socialization and learning. I see them not being able to stop sliding on the ice and going right under a passing car.

When they are on the playground I don't smile at seeing them experimenting with how they can twist their bodies and climb the highest on the jungle gym. I see them falling off and snapping their necks so they are paralyzed.

You get the picture. AND I have to say, I blame most of this on that old show Rescue 911. Just seeing the dangers a toothbrush can pose .......

It is even so bad that during a family therapy session each of the kids had to draw a picture of the whole family. They were to draw them as something but not a person. Ray was drawn by most of the kids as a bulldog (his nickname), Kimmy as a cat, Mikaela as a horse ..... EVERYONE of the kids drew me as a WART! A worry wart. I was so embarrassed but they were all 100% correct.

It gets worse. Now I am having panic attacks in the morning when the news talks about accidents along the route that Ray takes to work. Unfortunately he drives on two different highways that are notorious for accidents and fatal ones at that. This morning when I pulled up the web site for my favorite area newspaper the headline shouted of another fatal accident along his route. Of course my heart started racing and my stomach lurched. I quick texted him the all to familiar "OK???". Happily it was returned less then a minute later with a phone call "WHERE WAS THE ACCIDENT THIS MORNING?". I think he is getting annoyed and wants me to swear off reading the on line news until he gets home from work. I told him I don't search out the traffic reports but most of the time they are right there on the headlines.

Anyway, I am a worry wart. Can't help it. I tell myself that it has kept my kids safe since I have the ability to foresee that what they are doing has potential hazards. My husband and my kids disagree. Ray thinks that kids need to get hurt (bumps and bruises) to learn for themselves what their limits are. WHY WHY WHY would a mother allow her kids to get hurt just to learn something? I protest!

So, the kids know when they are with mommy it is safe playtime and when they are with daddy, well, almost anything goes. I am no longer included in their playtime with dad and Ray says it is better that way. If I don't know what they are doing, I can't worry about it. Does this man not know me at all?

I have promised to be more relax about the kids playtime. We will see how that goes. So if you see a bunch of kids walking down the sidewalk covered in bruises, bandages and casts, they will be mine.

~Just Me

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Writers block

I have been sitting at the computer for about 30 minutes now trying to write for this blog. I have started at least 5 different topics and have abandoned all them. I think I am suffering from writers block.

I have so much on my mind but I just can't seem to get it all out in a coherent way.

Some of the titles I have started with today include:

Nearing the end of the rope
Alphabet Soup
Too cold to lose weight
This little piggy went to market
Why I hate TOM

I am saving my rough drafts from all of the above and hopefully my writers block with disappear soon and you will see these titles attached to blogs. Until then .....

~Just Me

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Rabbits, Sheep, Alpaca, OH MY!

We moved to this house at the end of last March with the intention of making it into a mini farm. We only have a little over an acre of land but it seems huge in comparison to what we did have.

We started our farm life by building a chicken coop this past summer and now are the proud owners of 6 laying hens. They each give us one egg a day and with 7 of us in the house right now it makes for great weekend egg breakfasts.

Now we are toying with the idea of expanding our farm to include some money making animals. Ray really likes the idea of raising alpaca. I did too until I saw the price on them. We found this auction site and I almost hit the floor when I saw the bids. We saw one that actually went for $100,000.00! My wonderful, awesome, I would die for husband just reclined in the chair and said "yep, that is where the money is. Lets get a few." It took me three days to convince him that we really don't have that kind of money to invest in animals right now.

He is stuck on the idea of raising animals beyond our chickens, cats, dog, fish and guinea pig.

Then he started talking sheep. Long haired sheep that we could sell the wool on. Ok, I like that, not as expensive as alpaca. Through research I did find that we do not have enough land to support enough sheep to make any money.

Then I remembered that people do use the fur from Angora rabbits. I really liked this idea. The rabbit is not hurt, the fur grows back and the kids, even Keegan and Konnor, can help.

Now I am on a mission. Find out all I can about raising, breeding and showing rabbits. Seems that if you show your rabbits and they win you fetch top dollar for them. I already have some basic knowledge. My dad raised rabbits and showed then when I was a child. Now I hope I can dig out those memories to get me on the right track.

I have convinced my husband that if we can handle tiny little rabbits, we can talk about buying more land and adding on some sheep and once we have the rabbits and the sheep in hand, and they are making us money, we will talk about alpaca.

See ya on the bunny trail.

~Just Me

Friday, January 16, 2009


One of the hardest thing that a child has to go through is death of a beloved pet. No amount of hugs, kisses and he is in heaven now honey, is going to make your child feel any better.

Last night at bedtime, my daughter Kimberly, found her beloved guinea pig, Gary, laying on his side gasping for breath.

Gary fought for every breath he took for the next 4 hours while Kimberly laid next to his cage, which we sat on the living room floor. She stroked his fur and whispered to him how much she loved him and what a great pet he had been. She told him that she would miss him but it was ok to let go.

For a mom it was the hardest thing I had to go through in a very long time. Watching my 12 year old daughter try to not only ease her own pain but to comfort her dying pet.

Gary past away in the middle of the night while Kimberly slept. She kissed him goodbye this morning before she gathered the courage to go to school.

R.I.P. Gary, you will be missed.

~Just Me

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I cheated!

I was feeling really low the last two days. It is probably because of all this dam arctic air that has invaded Central Pennsylvania. I don't do cold! Anyway, I thought for sure that my efforts at dieting were getting me no where. I actually thought that I might have gained a pound of two.

So I cheated!

I got on the scale this morning and I was pleasantly surprised to see that I have dropped another 2 pounds since I weighed in on Sunday. YIPPEE! I total of 10 pounds gone that I will never have to look at in the mirror again!

It gave me the incentive I needed to stay focused today. I still haven't gotten to the exercise part just yet. My back is feeling a bit fragile right now and I DO NOT want it to get to the point it was two years ago when I was in so much pain that I seriously consider ... my options. But knowing that, at least for right now, my eating plan is working and I am still losing, has inspired me to stay on track.

I hope everyone else who is trying to get healthy this year is doing well too.

~Just Me

PS. Anyone know how I can come with about $100,000.00? Legally.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


I am afraid of fire. I am VERY afraid of fire. I am VERY DEATHLY afraid of fire!

I have no real reason to fear fire as much as I do, but I have this over whelming fear that I will someday burn to death in a fire. My mom has teased me in the past saying that I was probably a witch burned at the stake in a previous life.

I am so afraid of fire that I flunked the test in girl scouts on camp fire building. I just couldn't do it.

Last night was a bad night for me.

I live in a very rural area were all my neighbors burn one thing or another. Trash, coal, wood ... We even have a coal furnace in our basement to heat the house.

I woke up every hour because I swore the house was on fire because of the smokey smell in my bedroom. After the 4th time of getting up and searching the whole house, attic to basement. Front door to back and wandering around outside I gave up and drifted off to sleep for 2 straight hours. The alarm went off at 6 am and I switched on the light to find my awesome husband had brought his work coveralls up to our bedroom and this was what I was smelling. He had worn them the last time he was burning trash out back and they smelled just like a camp fire.

I was soooo mad. Not at him but at myself. We have smoke alarms. We have LOTS of smoke alarms. Why didn't I trust them enough to get a good nights sleep?

I hate to admit it but this isn't the first time I have had a sleepless night or even a peacefully day. I have driven my kids, husband, friends and even the fire department crazy with my fear of fire.

I have no clue, short of going to a shrink, how to overcome this fear. ANYone have any ideas??

~Just Me

Monday, January 12, 2009


I am sorry but I hate the cold and I do everything possible to avoid being cold. When everyone in my house is running around in t-shirts and shorts, I still have on a hoodie. When the temperature drops and my family puts on long sleeves I have already broken out the thermal shirts. Right now as I type I have a thermal under shirt on under a t-shirt, under a sweat shirt, under a zippered hoodie, sweat pants, thermal socks and big fuzzy slippers. According to my family I am nuts but like I said I hate to be cold. This of course will make you wonder why I live in Central Pennsylvania, but that is another story!

Now we shift to my kids. It is COLD outside, no it is FREEZING outside! According to "weather bug" (a internet weather service that keeps me updated on the weather on my toolbar). It is only 22 degrees outside with a wind at a steady 5 to 10 miles per hour. It is FRIGID out there. Any sane person would put on a coat to go outside. My kids are NOT sane!!!!

"My coat won't fit in my locker", "I will only be outside for a minute", " My coat makes me look fat" ..... The bottom line, I have found is that once a kid gets to middle school, at least in this family, it is no longer cool to were a coat in the winter. Doesn't matter that they are standing out side for the bus as their lips turn blue, or that they are shivering uncontrollable, there is always one excuse or another why they don't NEED a coat. They, in my opinion, are insane!

I have tried, bribing them, threatening them, pleading with them, nothing works. They will not wear a coat to school.

Oh, if we are running to the store, or they are out playing around they will put on their coat (sometimes), but just not to go to school.

So after doing this with 5 kids in a row, I have come to the conclusion that once my kids hit middle school the are "too cool for coats".

~Just Me

Had my weigh in yesterday. YIPPEE! Another 3 1/2 pounds gone from my body that I will never have to see again. So far 8 yes 8 pounds gone forever

Saturday, January 10, 2009

It's a guy thing


You have to remember I had 3 daughters before I had any sons and then you might have a better grasp about what I am saying.

Before I met Ray, I had 3 girls and he had one of each. We joined our families into one home almost 7 years ago and Tyler was already 5 and Mikaela was 7 when that happened.

Even after 7 years of living with Tyler, 5 years with Keegan and almost 4 with Konnor I still shake my head at the differences between boys and girls. It is even more evident when I compare Tyler and Kimmy. They are only about 3 weeks apart and had the same due date but the differences between their maturity is so vast I am amazed that they really are the same age. Ray of course just says "It's a guy thing" and I am not sure if I will ever really understand what that means.

Here are some other things that make my mouth open, my forehead crease and my eyes squint and all I get in response from my awesome husband is "it's a guy thing"

Busting out in uncontrollable laughter because you just farted and it made a really cool noise on the chair at dinner - guy thing.

Discovering that your tissue holds 4 different colors of mucus and running around showing anyone that will look - guy thing

Finally being able to say your ABC's during one long belch - guy thing

Turning anything longer then 6 inches into drum sticks - guy thing

Thinking that if you spit into your hand that will wash away the dirt - a guy thing (of course my mom used to do that to my face with a napkin but it is still a guy thing!)

Being so proud that you left the biggest, darkest ring in the tub - guy thing

The list goes on and on but I am starting to think it is more of a caveman thing then a "guy thing". My girls are not girly girls by any means. In fact I can't remember the last time I saw any of them in a dress on but even they roll their eyes at their brothers "it's a guy thing" behaviors.

Now my husband assures me that although they may never outgrow these behaviors (he hasn't), they will learn to control them when they become interested in girls and ONLY when they around these girls. So what he is saying to me is that for the next 14+ years I will have to endure my boys and their friends hanging out at my house doing what my husband describes as "it's a guy thing".

GOD please grant me a deaf ear and slightly blurred vision until they move out.

~Just Me

Friday, January 9, 2009

New Beginings

Ok, so I was coerced into blogging here. We will see how it goes. Up until now I have only blogged on MySpace and I have enjoyed it.

At least for now I will be posting the same blog in both places.

Who am I .... Not an easy way to answer that, but I think if you read my blogs for awhile you will get to know me.

Below you will read the blog entry that I posted on MySpace today. To read others so you can catch up -

~Just Me

Milk, bread, toilet paper .....

I have to go to the grocery store today to pick up things that I would be going to the grocery store to pick up any other Friday. The difference this week is that I know that the store is going to be packed because the weather guy has reported that we are to get a little snow tomorrow. If we are lucky (not, I hate snow) we could see up to 6". Now everyone is going to be rushing to the grocery store to stock up on milk, bread, toilet paper ..... WHY?? I can understand that during the "snow storm" and shortly after, it may not be safe to drive but really how long is it going to be before the road crews get 6 inches of snow cleared off the roads???

I can almost guarantee that if I wait to go to the store until after lunch, the shelves where the bread and milk are will be near empty and everyone in the store will be pushing a cart load of stuff in the fear that they will be stuck in their house for a week or more. PLEASE!

Sorry to offend if your are one of these people, but think about it. The last time I was stuck in my home for any length of time was February or March of 1996 when Mother Nature dump over 30" at one time on us. I know that the weather man rarely gets in right but I don't think that "up to 6 inches" is going to turn into over 30 inches.

To tell you the truth, it really doesn't make me mad at all to see these people out there stocking their carts, just makes me giggle and shake my head and wonder how long they have lived in Pennsylvania.

~Just Me

PS! Because of the snow, we are postponing our trip to farm show until Sunday. See you there!