God is still good, even when you have problems

Finding peace in pain- one mom's journey with a premature baby

I was feeling good that morning, the sun was shining, I was humming a tune, and my new orange tote bag was just the exact right shade to nod a cheery greeting to the crisp feeling of Fall in the air. We had just got our little mini girl back to our home town hospital from her six week stay at a different hospital an hour and a half away, and I was fairly skipping across the parking lot with happiness to be back “home”. I twirled into the elevator and bounced down the hall looking forward to a few hours of rocking my girl and chatting with the new nurses. One step into the room, one glance at the IV sticking out of the fuzzy little head that hadn’t been there when I left, one glance at the machine with it’s taunting numbers, and my happy feeling slowly drained away and wafted … Continue reading

My work space – the before and the first after

a boutique style craft room

I was fiddling around with a new blog page just for room renovation posts, and realized my favorite room makeover of all time is totally missing!  For the past year this room has been my haven of peace and quiet, my place to splash paint and litter fabric scraps to my little heart’s content, to squirrel away more crafty junk than my Mister should ever know exists in my possession, and my mommy version of playing princess. Oh yes. I’m a firm believer in doing dress rehearsals for dreams and goals. In a perfect world, I would have a cheerful little shop on a sunny side street just bursting with random bits of interesting things, and pretty this and thats to wear, and piles of books to pour over, and cozy nooks to sit and read (or write blogs if you were into that sort of thing), and generally just the … Continue reading

NICU day 70

nicu day 70 from a parent's perspective

This is the highlight of my day, this is also the dread of my day. This place holds happiness and tears, hopes and fears. I can do this part with my eyes closed. This is the easy part. Park my truck, smile at the door greeters, punch the elevator button for the third floor, walk past the giraffe painting on the left, round the corner to the wash room, scrub my hands and arms with soap that makes my palms itch, grab a clean yellow hospital gown from the cabinet. Sigh. The arms are inside out. Again. I wonder if I’m the only one who finds this annoying. Mash the button outside the windowless double doors labeled Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It’s a new girl at the desk today, she doesn’t recognize me in the camera. I identify myself. It never feels right, this routine of asking permission to see my baby. The doors … Continue reading

3 Ways to Avoid Spiritual Drift

canoe

Canoeing is right at the tippy top of my list of favorite things to do. Nothing beats sliding through the water on a hot summer day to the tune of splashing paddles and the lap of water. I’ve canoed on lakes, bays and rivers and I can tell you this much. I would heaps rather paddle down a river than up a river. The peaceful outdoor adventure of a leisurely downstream float takes on more of the look of a focused effort not to have a stroke on the return trip upstream. Forget looking at the birds and feeling the breeze, you won’t even feel your arms much less a breeze! Paddling upstream in a stiff current is no joke, and takes a ton of focus and energy. Seasons in life ebb and flow a lot like currents. Sometimes we find ourselves in an upstream situation so absorbed in nothing more than the effort to move forward, … Continue reading

Facing Fears

cockroach

The big girl is out of school for the summer, which means there are sprinklers to play in, bubbles to blow, little sisters to fight, art projects to smear on the floor, Frozen reenactments to perform, and cockroaches to face. Oh yes. Cockroaches. One cockroach to be exact. One disgusting little beast, the unlucky casualty of the latest bug man visit, breathing it’s last on the bathroom floor. Here it was discovered, and I, knowing that it was mostly dead, assured the concerned party that I would sweep it up momentarily. Being the practical mommy I am, I ordered she ignore the bug, and use the bathroom immediately before making a puddle on the floor. But then. The evil cockroach did the unthinkable. It waved an antenna. This was too much. The panicked child fled with shrieks as lusty as a five year old can possibly produce, and refused under any circumstances … Continue reading

What a micro preemie taught me about Mother’s Day

what a micro preemie taught me about mother's day

I’d never seen the short brown haired lady who appeared at my bedside before. A kind face with intelligent eyes looked intently at me while she spoke slowly and clearly so I would understand. She was a representative from the land of sick babies, here to explain words I’d never even heard before.  Neonatologist. Five hours previously I couldn’t have told you what that word meant. Even now I just knew that it was code for “smart person who knows a lot about tiny babies”. Please just go away. You are a busy person, and our baby is fine. I’m only here for observation, don’t you know that? Even as the thoughts swirled through my brain her voice droned on and on…statistics of survival, probable and possible problems micro-preemies face, typical treatment plans…not the sort of information any mom ever plans on hearing, let alone having to understand. And then she was gone, and … Continue reading

God’s got a plan – Happy Easter and my unintended vacation

baby moniter

Having a set plan, schedule, or list is my recipe for sanity in life. I love a plan. I’m about as happy as the cat who fell into the pool when my plans get changed…so when I plan for, oh, say having a baby, I expect nine months before that baby gets here. That’s the schedule for a baby. Everyone knows that. Babies should know that. Well, apparently my little miss hasn’t gotten the memo. So, I’m taking a very un-planned vacation in my local hospital trying my best to get the little dear educated on such matters…or maybe God’s just trying to get me educated on a few things, come to think of it. Apparently things like patience, trust, faith, and prayer all need as much practice as I give to all my schedule writing. Who knew? I won’t go into a ton of detail, but it turns out my little … Continue reading

Bathroom plans and inspiration

If you walk up my freshly painted black and white stairs, and across the shiny “new “wood floor, and by the hall library (which I haven’t shown you just yet), and peak behind one of the crisply painted black doors…you’ll find the ugliest room in my house. It’s my best kept worst secret: the upstairs bathroom. It’s fully furnished with puke green sinks, shower and toilet, rotting drywall, pealing lanolin, leaking pipes, and rusty fixtures. It’s the last major room remodel we have left that needs to be addressed, preferably sooner than later. I’ll spare you the awful pictures, and instead show you some of my inspiration for this tragic little bathroom of mine. First off, we’ll need a floor. I’m thinking some crisp black and white would be nice. I know, I know, I’m just full of surprising color choices. I really like the look of small tiles, and … Continue reading

The squeaky wheel gets the oil

oil

Some people just have certain particular and unique talents. One of my many unfortunate talents is to pick the absolute noisiest, shakiest, most obnoxious sounding shopping cart available every single time I go into a store. I mean, every time. It doesn’t matter if I wiggle it first, do a test run, or pick it because it’s the cleanest…I’m guaranteed to go trotting down aisle five browsing for bagels squeaking shrilly every step of the way. Add to that my two little sidekicks who chatter like magpies, strike up conversations with any random person who might look their way, and insist on singing as loudly as possible, and I can pretty much throw shopping with any sort of dignity out the window. There’s nothing to do but just smile and be thankful I’m not prone to shop lift, there is no way under the sun I would ever escape notice if … Continue reading

Art is in the eye of the beholder

DSCF0937

Did you know a story doesn’t have to be written down in words? Things tell stories, pictures tell stories, styles tell stories, your house even tells a story to anyone who walks inside. I’m a random decorator, I’ll admit that with no question. I have every style from shabby chic, to farmhouse, to modern, to Victorian mixed all up in every room…but everything has one thing in common. It’s all telling a story…of past times, of classic tales, of good memories, of adventure, of history, of humor. A reader noticed in my kitchen remodel post the pictures that hang under my cabinets, and asked about them. They are prints of water color paintings of fishing villages in England. They are nothing but cork placements I found at a thrift store, and stuck on the wall with sticky strips. Certainly nothing fancy. Certainly not art. I don’t mind a bit really. … Continue reading