My favorite folks ! :)

30 April 2011

Last day of April

This month seemed to go by so fast!  I've kind of been taking a break from blogging, tho not by design, and i've slowed down on blog reading, too, tho i eventually get to them all.

Again, i can't really say what has been going on with "our family" that we are helping.  It has been occupying quite a bit of my thought recently.  The parents are currently separated, but i don't hear from either of them that they want to divorce.  

I've been doing a lot of knitting, and Olivia is coming over later today and we will make cards.  The yarn shop here has lots of wonderful yarns, but she also rents space to other vendors and today a scrapbooking lady is opening up, so we'll stop by to see what she has.  

The Royal Wedding of course is what many folks are talking about, or American Idol.  Neither draws my attention too much.  I did, of course, check out Kate's dress.  I have to say, i like it much better than i did Diana's.  That one was over the top for me.  Since then i have also been looking at dresses that i admire.  

This has been national infertility awareness week.  Not that i think much has been done about it, or at least it hasn't come across my radar too much.  I just found a series of posts done on this issue.  I've not read them all (and given my current slow-to-read-blogs status, it maybe a while before i get thru them), but this one is definitely worth a read:  10 Ways not to be Insensitive About Infertility.  I'm going to highlight a couple (of things not to say).  

1.  “Well, it could be worse.”
2.  “Enjoy life without kids while you still can.”
4.  “As soon as you stop trying, it’s going to happen.”
6.  "Maybe this is just God’s way of telling you that you’re not supposed to be parents.”
7.  “Be glad you’re not pregnant – this kid in my belly is killing me!”  
8.  “You can’t conceive on your own? Well then just adopt.”
9.  “Well, if you need a sperm donor, I’ve got some healthy swimmers.” 

I've had all these things said to me in one form or another.  I've not had offers for sperm donors, but i have had a couple of women tell me that they "get pregnant so easily" that they could be a surrogate for me.  I don't think they begin to have a clue all that is involved with that.

It isn't real easy to hear someone say that maybe God just knew i couldn't handle being a parent.  (Oh yeah?  How about the millions of folks who abuse their kids?  They can handle them better than i so God gave them kids?)  It also isn't very easy to hear someone say, "If you're not a parent, that's your fault.  There are PLENTY of kids who need a home."  These folks don't understand what is involved in adoption and especially adoption of an older child.  I'm not saying that we are against it, but for multiple reasons it is doubtful we could take that path.

And then, just this week the doc i work with asked if i want to buy a child.  They are expecting their second girl in June, and their first child is keeping them busy.  I had commented about how very busy and even hard their lives are going to be for a while and he said off hand something about selling the child.  I replied "That is not a very nice thing to say to someone in my position."  His response was, "I was just kidding."  Yeah, i knew that.  It still wasn't funny and is rather painful.  

On the other hand, there are folks in the world who get it.  I got an invitation to a baby shower this week, and the person who sent it added a post-it:  Kathryn, we didn't want to leave you out.  If you're not up to coming, we understand.  (Heart)  

I thought that very kind and sensitive.  But that particular family has been very loving all thru this, even tho i don't see them much. 

My plants are doing well.  I transplanted them into larger pots about 10 days ago.  They are still indoors (and the kitties think i put them there for simply for cat pleasures of digging in dirt).  I think most are going to make it.  If they do, they'll be moved outdoors in early to mid-June.  And i'm ready to start another round of seed-starting.

Outdoors the trees are blooming, and we may have apples even from the tree that was so severely pruned - if we don't have a late freeze.  The onions i planted in boxes are up, and i put peppermint and spearmint at the bases of a couple of the trees.  However, i've not yet been outside today and it got down to 20F last night.  

So, that's a small bit of what has been going on on the mountain.  We had a good Easter.  I would have liked to take "our kids" with us to Duane's family, but i didn't want to take them away from their mama.  My sis and her friend came up for a day Friday/Saturday.  It was good to see her.  

Hope y'all are well and had a good holiday.  I still think about you and pray for you, even tho i've been neglecting blogging. 


15 April 2011

Life! Good, bad, and inbetween

 I've been a horrible blogger.  I've not even responded to all the kind comments on the last post, tho i treasure each and every one.

Kip and Sierra on Sunday after church.  (Do NOT buy tights from Payless Shoes!)

The family with which we are involved ("rent" the kids) is in crisis.  Dad left with Joshua.  It was chaos.  We took the two older ones from Saturday noon until Sunday about 5 PM.  I can't say much about this because:  1.  It is not my story.  2.  It is very complicated and i don't know the whole truth.  3.  I would sound critical.  

What i can say is that we want to do what we can to help these kids and as much as possible, provide a safe, calm, healthy environment for them when they need a place to crash for a little while.  

It is hard to be around chaos without life feeling a bit chaotic as well.  We have been taking steps to deal with that.  We also are striving to set appropriate boundaries and check that we are not being drawn too much into drama.

I am going to make a serious effort to garden this year.  In this climate, that means starting seedlings indoors.  I planted 2 trays on the evening of 4 April.

These are my seedlings before we left Tuesday AM, 12 April, about 1 week later.  

These were taken this AM.  Everything i've planted so far has germinated except the bell pepper (in the same row as the zucchini, 3 plants each).  Tho not every pod has sprouted, every type has shown some signs of growth.  You can't see the watermelon in this pic, but there are three that are sprouting and shooting up small leaves.

These need to be put in pots in the next couple of days.  It will be too cold to transplant them outside until the beginning of June at the earliest.  However, a couple of years ago i tried this Jiffy "greenhouse" system.  Not many sprouted and i made the mistake of leaving the ones that did sprout in the wet environment too long.  They grew fungus and rotted.  

I am very excited at this growth.  I'm such an inexpert gardener!  I have other things i'd like to try to grow, too.  I've not started any tomatoes yet.  I'd like to do parsnips, but haven't found seed for it.  We only have the one raised bed outside and our ground is not appropriate to plant things in it directly, so we will probably have to build a couple of more beds.  Duane moans about the expense because we have to buy some soil to go in that big bed (the one we have is 4'x8'x8").  We would do well to start composting soon.  We gave it a try in the past, but what we set up wasn't adequate and much too small.

Do you watch Glee?

We don't watch the program, but know a number of folks who do.  This is my cousin April.  She has been playing an extra on the program.  I know she is going to be in the episode on the Prom.  If you watch it, keep a look out for my very lovely cousin.  :)

My Aunt was out for a visit with my cousin, and Duane and i met them in Dana Point Tue eve for dinner.  My sister Elsa drove up from San Diego, too. 

I saw a new doc on Thur.  I'm pretty hopeful about this one, but trying to to get too ecstatic.  Have had too many problems in the past.   I'm not going to write about it here, this is too long already.  But i did talk a little about it at Hawkes' Health (a forum to which i belong).  If you are interested, my part is on page 2 about half way down:  hCG diet?

So, that's what has been going on in our lives.  

What plans do you have for the weekend?  Will you be joining family for Easter?  It is coming up quickly!  Next week is Holy Week already.  The year is speeding by!


03 April 2011

This was a challenging week

But it was a good thing that Sierra came Thursday instead of Wednesday.  Duane came home that afternoon and was able to spend some time with her, too.

I knew that she wants more attention than the boys, but i had not realized how much that would exhaust me.  She needs more limit-setting and that is fatiguing, too.  Someone in her life must respond to her "Oh, please, please, please, please, please, please!" when she is told "no."  But i find it manipulative and that it irritates the - whatever - out of me.  And, although she is not yet 9, i'm getting some of that teenage attitude vibe from her.  

I tend to back away from that nonsense very quickly.  She is not my child!  So i think i'm going to have to explore my intention with this child and where i want to go with this.  That sounds rather pompous.  I don't mean it to be.  The fact is, in another case i would walk away from it.  But i don't think that is the best solution for her.  

I asked sister Elsa (who is a Marriage Family Therapist) and she said that it may be that i need to be more direct.  Not challenging the attitude - which would be my gut response - but the reason behind it. That it may be that she has been disappointed by others in her life and when i say/do certain things it triggers this appearance of an adolescent attitude because she doesn't expect i'll keep my word.  Or something.  It is hard to explain without going into too much detail (and making this far too long).  Elsa reminded me that if Sierra has used certain strategies in her life before and they have worked, that is what she will use in the future.  And that she must be somewhat comfortable with us to be pulling some of this now.  

So, it may be that we will have the opportunity to model different ways of responding that she wouldn't experience otherwise.  Although, again, i hesitate to say that thinking it presumptuous on my part. 

We had a really fun day with Joshua yesterday, and we did a lot.  Duane picked him up about noon.  I'd been cooking with Olivia and was resting.  We had lunch (they had sloppy joes) and then the two of them went off to explore the ravine that is across the street behind neighbors' houses.  The ravine is not private property, but to get to it they had to cross some private property.  

When they came back Joshua and i planted onions (i think they will manage in this chilly weather okay).  We also weeded the raised planter box.  Then Duane made a "Jacob's Ladder" for him.   Images   We let him choose the ribbon to use to hold it together.  Duane used his staple gun, but had to use a hammer sometimes, too.  Joshua helped with some of the hammering.  

Then the adults were tired, so we set a couple of lawn chairs in the yard, about 20 feet apart.  We encouraged him to run back and forth between us (sometimes circling a tree) and giving us high 5s.  We thought that might work off some of his energy.  

Then we took a "walk around the block" (there are no sidewalks here) with a ball.  When we got home we watched some TV, and he was pretty quiet by then.  Duane fell asleep for a while.  We had dinner (they had meatloaf that Olivia made; i didn't force veggies as i have a lot of them hidden in the meatloaf) and more TV.  Then as it was starting to turn to dusk we took him home.  

It sounds like we did a lot, but it really was not a hard day.

So, it was a fun but challenging week.  I'll have to be sure to rest a lot this afternoon and some tomorrow so i can survive this week at work.

Oh, Duane said that his snow shelter in the previous post was technically a Quinzhee.  The construction and intent of this is different from an igloo.  His was built with an outside chamber (that part had been destroyed by the time he took this pic) where he kept his pack and an inside chamber.  He said it was warm ("warm" being a relative term - meaning no matter how cold the temp outside, inside stays right around freezing).  It did fine for him, his problem is his metabolism is such that he feels cold when he first wakes up (even in the house).  So he was glad to get home and take a warm nap!

So, what did you do this weekend?  :)