to my children that the prophet of my church had passed away. So many of my blogging friends have posted about this, and my good friend Heather at In The Quiet Heart wrote exactly what I would have wanted to say. So I'm quoting her here:
"This dear sweet man has been the leader and president of our beloved church. Gordon B. Hinckley died this evening at the age of 97. I couldn't let this go without a little, modest tribute. President Hinckley will always seem so familiar to me. I felt like I knew him more than any other leader of my lifetime. He was charity, kindness and lightheartedness completely personified. He was dignity and integrity to his very core. He inspired me to be better, and to do better. When he spoke he moved and engaged me. The world has lost a great, great man. His legacy will last many generations. My heart aches and my eyes are teary, but as he taught us "Carry On." That's my job. Carry on just a small portion of the person he was."
from Melissa at Hope for the Hopeless. I'm unabashedly proud. Don't know what I did to deserve it, but I'll take it. With many thanks. I'm still thinking about what to say in my acceptance speech, and have been so busy revelling in the excitement that I haven't thought of who to bestow it on next, but don't despair. I will deliver. Eventually.
And in other news........we've been partying our little fannies off. Emma turned 6 today, and it's the culmination of weeks of celebration. Photos to follow....
1. Ventilator-breathes for the baby when they are too sick to breathe by themselves. I cried when I found out Jacob had to be vented.
2. Surfactant-drug given to help babies lung mature if they are having respiratory distress.
2. CPAP-a step down from the ventilator, this is Continuous Positive Airway Pressure, or mechanical ventilation.
3. Nasal Canula-gives the baby extra puffs of oxygen.
4. Scale-babies are weighed every day. Whether they gain or lose weight is huge.
5. TNP-Total Nutrition Package. Given via IV.
6. Bilirubin lights/levels-those purple goggles are fashionable!
7. Destaturations-pretty common but alarming all the same.
8. IV's-everywhere-even in their head
9. Neosure-high calorie formula
10. Kangaroo care-the best feeling ever. Skin to skin contact with your peanut.
11. Gavage feeding-that's the thin plastic tube that is gently inserted into the nose and threaded down to the stomach to feed the baby before they are strong enough to nipple feed.
12. Apnea monitors-many NICU babies come home on these to monitor their oxygen saturation and heart rate. A safety device that has the ability to send the parent over the edge.
13. Synagis-the only FDA approved medication to help protect high-risk babies' lungs from severe RSV. These shots are extremely expensive and are given every 28-30 days through RSV season, and dose is determined by weight.
From Dates to Diapers and Beyond is hosting a Mom of the Week Award on her site. LOVE this idea! It's a great way to nominate those that you think are GREAT moms. If the person you nominate wins, they get spotlighted on her blog, and they get to post the Mom of the Week AWARD icon in their blog linking back to the feature. If you chose to spread the word like I am, you will be entered in a contest to win a custom pair of earrings. It's a win-win, baby! I know some pretty great moms out there, so I have some work to do! For more details, visit her blog with the hyper link above, or click on her button in my sidebar.
icon now proudly resides in my side bar. You should have seen me quickly copying and pasteing the HTML code when I received the email, putting it in my layout and excitedly viewing the little trophy. Ah, the simple pleasures of life. :) Scribbit hosts a write-away contest each month. January's was "The Great Escape". To read some really excellent entries, visit Scribbithere.
From a mini vacation in Utah with Grace, Emma and John for my dads wedding. With no camera though, many memories are going to have to stay tucked away in my little brain.
I'll remember: *Seeing my dad's eyes water when his bride walked down the isle and she smiled at him. So touching. *meeting my nephew and brother-in-law for the first time. *watching my girls stick out their tongues to catch snow flakes and make snow angels. *visiting with tons of relatives that I haven't seen in years. Amazing people. *visiting my mom and uncle John's grave with the kids *seeing John ride a sheep and wrap everyone around his little finger. *spending time with my grandparents and hearing more about their childhood. *enjoying my children play with cousins and new friends *lunch with Matt and Dee and 4 wheeler fun. *meeting Laura. Please visit her blog for more on our rendezvous. Pictures are posted too!
Here's my plea to relatives that read my blog. Send pictures of this weekend. Please.
Ever have anyone tell you things that are so inane it's almost unbearable? I'm still shaking my head over this one.
"Mom", "Destiny (name changed to protect the fibber, who is not my child) said that when we meet the Jonas Brothers for lunch I don't have to bring any money because it'll be their treat. And Hannah Montana will be there!"
"What? You are not having lunch with the Jonas Brothers and I'm sick of hearing about how Destiny is friends with all of these people that she's not".
"But mom. Did you know that Britany Spears got out of jail yesterday"?
"Ah. Don't say another word. I don't care one bit about Britany Spears, and neither should you."
In case I'm not the only one that wasn't sure, here's part of the definition: NOUN: A unit of cultural information, such as a cultural practice or idea, that is transmitted verbally or by repeated action from one mind to another. At its most basic, an Internet meme is simply the propagation of a digital file or hyperlink from one person to others using methods available through the Internet (for example, email, blogs, social networking sites, instant messaging, etc.).
I've participated in meme's before, I just didn't know there was a word for them or that there was a function to them other thanentertainment.
Melissa over at Hope for the Hopeless tagged me on this one, and I love that it has more guidelines than usual.
Here's the deal: Go back through your archives and post the links to your five favorite blog posts that you’ve written. But there is a catch:
Link 1 must be about family. Link 2 must be about friends. Link 3 must be about yourself, who you are… what you’re all about. Link 4 must be about something you love. Link 5 can be anything you choose.
This is a great way to circulate some of the great older posts everyone has written, return to a few great places in our memories and also learn a little something about ourselves and each other. Post your five links and then tag five other people. At least TWO of the people you tag must be newer acquaintances so that you get to know each other better. And don’t forget to read the archive posts and leave comments!
1. Family , I'm short on Jeff material because I think he'd kill me, but my blog is full of my kids.
2. Friends I don't post much about friends, but I think this one says it all.
I'm tagging (and there is a method to my madness. I'm only picking one blogging friend from each "cluster" of friends that I know visit each other so that they in turn can tag others that I would have, AND I've given immunity to those I tagged in my last meme): Shannon with Following Our Bliss, Cecily with My Chaos My Bliss, Tammy with the Halcomb Hellions, Heather of In the Quiet Heart, Robin from Around the Island. Anyone else that wants to participate is invited. I really look forward to reading more about all of you since this should produce a chain effect.....
1. Store your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil. It will stay fresh much longer and not mold! 2. Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating. Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking. 3. Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef. It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking. 4. To really make scrambled eggs or omelets rich add a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream, cream cheese, or heavy cream in and then beat them up. 5. Expanding Frosting. When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer for a few minutes. You can double it in size. You get to frost more cake/cupcakes with the same amount. You also eat less sugar and calories per serving 6. Reheating refrigerated bread. To warm biscuits, pancakes, or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in a microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food moist and help it reheat faster. 7. No More Mosquitoes. Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.
Just discovered: Two sippy cups of fermenting apple juice a la Lee Vineyards. Vintage? Unknown. Carries a punch (as evidenced by the smell). Proceeds help 5 clowns attend college. Email me if you are interested. Free shipping through Monday.
January's "write-away" contest has been announced, and since I feel compelled to enter every contest I come across, and because I love the guest judges' blog, I'm entering Scribbit's monthly competition, entitled, The Great Escape.
About a week ago I opted to write a few words for Sunday's Scribblings titled Then and Now. This is what I said, "Once, I was a spoiled, spoiled little girl who basked in the love her parents showed her. Soon, my world came crashing down around me and I was forced to confront a hideous crime. Then, I was filled with incredible hatred. Now I feel pity. And regret. And sadness."
Many who commented wanted me to elaborate. Especially, I think, on "the crime". I'm not quite ready to do that, and don't know if I ever will be, publicly, but I will try to address my thoughts on how my life was filled with hatred and now it's not. That's My Great Escape.
It didn't happen over night, or over the course of a few months, or even over a few years. I can't tell you really how long it took, but I can estimate. The crime occurred when I was exactly the age my oldest daughter is now, and it's been at least 8 years since I realized that how I felt had changed. I'll do the math for you. About 20 years. You know how people talk about having an epiphany of understanding? I didn't happen that way with me. Rather, over the course of a period of time I realized I wasn't filled with anger and hatred towards the person that committed "the crime" that wreaked havoc on my life, and so many others, including, I'm convinced, his own.
The hatred ate at me from inside. It was a negative energy that nibbled away at pieces of my heart and took the good from the great and left me feeling beaten. It made most situations appear worse than they were, and kept me from truly enjoying many great moments. It made me envy others that had what I didn't have. It was insiduous and sapped the light. It was downright unhealthy, but I could justify it because at first it was the only way I knew how to survive the situation. I was angry at my mom for leaving me, even though she didn't have a choice, and I hated the person that took her away from me. But then it became an excuse and it seemed like justifiable anger. It became the scapegoat for things that happened in my life; choices I made or that others made and their relationship to each other.
And then I started to grow up and look at my life from another perspective. One that didn't blame someone else for everything that had happened. I began to contemplate how a series of choices effected many others, and stopped looking at only how it effected me. I started to see the world as not just revolving around me and my hurt. I started to ponder the interconnectedness of all of us and how we deal with what life throws our way. Mostly though, I think I was blessed with Divine Intervention and the sure knowledge that I was important and valuable and that overcoming this hurdle was possible.
And that's my Great Escape. Breaking the bonds of hatred and feeling free for the first time in many, many years.
I've been tagged a few times this week, and for lack of time to do all of them will probably only get to play along with one. We'll see. Tammie at The Halcomb Hellions tagged me with this one:
The Rules (I've taken the liberty of modifying this somewhat):Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog. Share the 5 top places on your “want to see or want to see again” list. orShare 5 things you never pictured being in your future when your were 25 years old.Tag a minimum of 5, maximum of 10 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.The tagees have a choice of which they want to do.
There are WAY more than 5 places I'd like to see for the first time and in some cases, again. So, here's my list of places in 5 categories. Thanks to Smithsonian magazine for their compilation of must see's.
When timing could be everything: 1. Machu Picchu, in the Urubamba Valley of Peru is supposed to be best viewed with the rising sun. 2. Aurora Borealis, commonly called the Northern Lights are part of my favorite memories of living in Alaska. I remember my dad waking me up and taking me outside in the middle of the night just so I wouldn't miss the wonder in the sky. FYI: The best times to see the aurora are around the fall and spring equinoxes.
Deteriorating or threatened: 1. Venice: I'd love to visit Venice again with my hubby and enjoy a romantic cruise in a gondola. I'd also prefer to go this time when it's not so hot I can hardly stand it. 2. Galapagos Islands: who wouldn't want to visit the "world's most biologically intact tropical archipelago?"
Engineering Wonders (I don't think these need elaboration) 1. Pyramids of Giza 2. Statues at Easter Island 3. Great Wall of China
Time Capsules 1. Pompeii. Missed it on my tour of Italy, and still disappointed about it. 2. Mesa Verde: Right here in the US, this would be a wonderful vacation....it would force me to get some exercise, and, I love Native American artifacts.
Museums The Louvre: this time I'd prefer not to fall down the stairs, and I'd like to spend a lot more quality time there than I did.
There are so many wonderful museums in the world.....I'd love to visit so many. For repeat visits, and for the first time. Just wait until my kids are old enough to be manageable at them.....I hope they like art and history or it just could be the greatest form of torture around.
This is a hard one. But, I'm going to have to go with Villette by Charlotte Bronte. Why? Because. Part of it has to do with the ending though. Read it and tell me what you think. I'd really love to know why I've never met anyone that loves it like I do, and I'd enjoy discussing the novel with someone who cares. To see what books others enjoy, link back to Aloha Friday on An Island Life.