Saturday, September 3, 2011

"Marriage. Marriage is what brings us together today..."

My hubby and I just celebrated 11 yrs of marriage.
Anniversary Graphics

The girls very sweetly gave us a card
with the following acrostic...
(copied here as it was written)

Hope you have a nice day
And lots of love and kisses
Pride in 11 years
Parents of three

Never give up
N\other & Father (major creativity points for this one!)
Initials: B's
Very Truly Yours
Everlasting Love
And Hugs
"Remember our wedding?"

How sweet is that?

How does this relate to Diabetes or Celiac? 
Well, the card doesn't relate to D directly,
but our marriage does.

Let's face it...
when D enters your life, it enters EVERY part of it!

It's strange to think that D has only been a part of our marriage for 2 of the 11 years, but it has cemented a partnership in our care for the girls. I feel immeasurably blessed by my hubby's involvement in D care. It's real love IN ACTION! Seriously, why else would anyone be willing to wake up at all hours to check BGs so you can get more than two and a half hours of sleep at a time?

Yup, I think he loves us.

Scratch that. 

I know he does! 

That's a pretty great anniversary gift, don't ya think?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Joyful Monkey Turns 8

Happy 8th Birthday Joyful Monkey!!! 
Life has been quite the roller coaster, but you've always been up for the challenge. 
And it's even better with friends...

Friday, August 19, 2011

Tonight, I Took a Trip

What a trip! Well, one of my friends would call it an "emotional journey". As Social Butterfly is fast asleep during this, the wee hours of her birthday morn, I retrieved "her box" from the top shelf in the closet.

The box contains all of the memorabilia and trinkets from her first year...her birth announcement, commemorative silver coin, first baseball, first Bible, the outfit she came home him, the bib her great grandmother sent her from the Salisbury Cathedral in England, and many other treasures that had been tucked away.

It was such a sweet walk down memory lane. Our lives were full, but simple. We lived in an apartment with my sister while my hubby and I were finishing our final year of our bachelor's degrees. My sister would watch the girls while I packed my Tuesdays and Thursdays with classes, so I could be home the rest of the week.
Daily life was filled with play-doh and crayons for History Buff, while Social Butterfly spent her day swinging, nursing and having her share of tummy time.

As a baby, SB was a dream.
She really was.

She was content wherever she was. She was, by far, my most compliant baby. It's much the same today. She is the first one to give something up if another is in need or just simply desires it. She's the first to sacrifice. She's the first one to offer a helping hand. She is a peacemaker with a tender heart.

While I long for the simple sweetness of her yesteryear, I realize that I am as blessed today as I was the first day I brought her home. More so, actually, as she has become a beautiful young lady who seeks to honor the Lord because her heart desires to.

Happy Birthday Social Butterfly!

Thank you, Lord, for this sweet daughter you have entrusted to us. May You always be her rock and your Word, her foundation. You have gifted her with such a servants' heart and I look forward to seeing how you use her to further your kingdom. Thank you for calling her into your forever family. Amen

Friday, July 8, 2011


Music. Ahhhhh. The Lord uses music in our lives all the time to bring hope and healing. We use music to praise Him. And often, both collide. He brings us hope and healing as we praise Him.

Hallie's excitement and enthusiasm for Chris Tomlin's "Our God Is Greater" song parallel's Joyful Monkey's enthusiasm for Matt Redman's "You Never Let Go". Not long after JM's diagnosis, we sang this worship song at church. If you had looked down our row, you probably would have seen many in our family wiping tears from their eyes. The lyrics are so fitting for a Type 1 Diabetic whose hope is in Jesus. It's one of Joyful Monkey's favorites and because it means so much to her, it makes me cry all over again.

In fact, worship time at church has become an emotional affair for me. Worship (corporately in song) has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. Until a few months ago, I was a part of the worship team at church, but I just can't do it anymore without crying. And for awhile, that bothered me. Why was I crying? My faith is strong. I'm not questioning my faith. Why am I crying all the time?

Don't get me wrong. I'm not wailing, or even sobbing. But, many a tear slide down my face throughout our corporate worship time on Sunday mornings. And it's not only a happy cry when reminded that we aren't alone in our struggles. It's a BITTERSWEET cry. Bitter because T1D is no joyride. Sweet because we don't take the journey alone.

It was only recently I realized why I'm crying. It's a sacrifice. And sacrifices HURT.

Sacrifice demands surrender, does it not? It's a sacrifice because I'm giving up the "WHY?" and choosing instead to trust Him through the storm. Ultimately, it's the sacrifice of my dreams for His will. It's a constant choice. And sometimes, that HURTS! But even when it hurts, He is so FAITHFUL!

I could turn my back or shake my fist at God. I could be angry and resentful. It's a sacrifice to say "I don't know why you've allowed my baby to struggle with all of this pain but I still choose to praise and honor You because You are the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). You are the same post-T1D diagnosis, as you were pre-T1D diagnosis. And I choose to trust that you will work all these things for good because we love You (Romans. 8:28). Not my will, but Your's be done."

Sacrifice: the surrender or destruction of something prized or desirable for the sake of something considered as having a higher or more pressing claim

Okay, enough about me crying and back to Kelsey's favorite song. She LOVES the part when it says "Oh no, You never let go...through the calm and through the storm. Oh no, You never let every HIGH and every LOW. Oh no, You never let go. Oh, you never let go of me."

She takes comfort in the image of Jesus hanging onto her in every HIGH and every LOW she experiences...a beautiful picture. 

The song is on my playlist at the bottom of my blog. If you'd like to see the video, pause the playlist first. ; )

And just to throw it in, our family theme song that we chose right after her diagnosis..."Not Be Shaken" by David Ruis. No real pics but you can hear the song...

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Rope

When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.  ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

The end of my rope? Yes & No! The last couple of weeks have been cuh-ray-zee! Three weeks ago, History Buff spent a week camping with my parents so we only had the Celiac Sisters at home with us. Last week Joyful Monkey did "grandparent camp" with my parents! We were supposed to go meet up with them at the beach on Saturday for the fourth of July weekend.
Unfortunately, I came down with a fever on Friday night and just didn't feel like packing up on Saturday. Come Sunday evening, my fever spikes to 104.4. 

It. was. NOT. good.

My parents came back from the beach Sunday night (because my Mom still worries about me). =) JM still stayed the night with them & my sister until Tuesday evening. Tuesday afternoon we took History Buff and Social Butterfly up to camp...their first camp experience without family. I wasn't about to miss seeing them off to camp no matter how I was feeling. I had been on antibiotics for 22 hrs. And by the time we returned home, I would have surpassed the 24 hrs. I needed so that I could see JM again without risking her exposure. 

I had missed the joy that girl brings to our home. I had missed HER! 

Unbeknownst to me, I would be making a second urgent care visit and had less than a day with my baby before I had to let her go again.

 I won't bore you with all the details of my 2 urgent care visits, the misdiagnosis, and the "evil" doctor. Suffice it to say, I have pneumonia. This accurate diagnosis was given to me last night.

I am so blessed to have people I trust to take care of Joyful Monkey. My husband would have gladly taken care of JM, but I didn't want her to be exposed being couped up in our house with me. And my Mom wanted him to be able to focus on my recovery, so my parents and sister have partnered in caring for JM. They have had their share of D-Care over the past two weeks and I know it's a lot to take on. But, they've done so happily and successfully! 

My rope had come to an end, as far as being able to take care of JM with a level head. My mental capacity and physical ability swung back and forth, pendulum style...not the best way to care for a T1D child.

So thankful for both a Heavenly Father that loves and cares for me & an earthly family who loves and cares for me. I just have to hang on to the knot at the end while I'm recovering and let the rest of my family do the heavy lifting where D is concerned. But "man a livin' " (as my Mom would say), I MISS MY GIRLS!!! I can't wait to go get JM tomorrow and pick up SB & HB on Saturday! We haven't been a full family in 3 weeks!!!

Have I mentioned how much I miss my girlies yet?


Monday, June 27, 2011

The ABCs of my Fried Brain

Sometimes it seems my brain is fried. You know? I just don't process info like I used to. 

Maybe I just need to get back to the basics. Let's see...we start with the ABCs, right? Okay, the ABCs in my head look something like this...


A1C, ADA, Alcohol prep pads, Animas, Anxiety, Autoimmune

Balance, Basals, Barley, Batteries, Beta cells, Blood glucose, Boluses

Carb Counting, Cartridges, Celiac, CGMs, Corrections, Courage, Cure

Delica, DOC, Donate, Dreams of a Dexcom

Education, Endocrinologist, EzBG, EzCarb

Fiber, Five-o-Four plan, Food

Glucagon, Glucometer, Glucose tabs, Gluten-free, Grams

Health, Highs, Hope, Hyperglycemia, Hypoglycemia

Insulin, Infusion sets, ISF, IOB

Ketoacidosis, Ketone strips

Lancets, Lantus, Late nights, Lethargy, Lows

MDI, Medical alert bands, Midnight testing, Misunderstood, Money

Novolog, Numbers

Pancreas, Pharmacy, Ping, Prayers, Protein, Pump, Pumpernickel


 Ratios, Research, Rye

Skin-Tac, Skittles, Smarties, Support, SWAG, Syringes

Target range, Tears, Test strips, Tour de Cure, Trends, Tubing, Tummietote, Type 1

UniSolv, Units


Walk to cure, Water, Wheat, Worry

Xanthum gum

Yawning, Yearly blood draws, YOU =)

Zizz (I definitely need one, do you?)

Yeah, there may be a reason I can't process information like I used to. My thought-processing capacity is all used up! If only the ABCs were still simple. Boy, I miss "A is for apple"!  =)

And, if I can't keep all of this straight for one diabetic and two celiacs, I can't imagine how Meri and Heather's brains functions with more than one diabetic child. My hats are off to you , ladies! You have amazing brain power!

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Unrelated Post (No T1D or Celiac): Promised Softball Pics & Tragic Loss

As Promised...
First off, here are the softball pics I promised. Photo creds go to my friend Amy, our co-coach and "team photographer". Thanks Amy!

History Buff...

Joyful Monkey...

Celiac Softball Sisters...

 Social Butterfly...

The last weekend of softball was our End of Season Tournament. We took second place in our bracket. The girls played so well, it was amazing! We're one of the youngest teams and we only had 9 players to fight for our second place. No one was able to rest, which made it a bit difficult with Joyful Monkey. She struggled with some lows throughout the games, but nothing a pump suspension and Gatorade couldn't handle (okay, so there is a little T1D in this post).

I think this was my favorite year of softball. History Buff pitched incredibly for her first year of pitching and Social Butterfly grew tremendously as a catcher (she even pitched a bit). Joyful Monkey did fabulously at short stop. That girl knows the game and can anticipate movement quick enough to analyze the play.

Oh, and can you spot the tummietote in Joyful Monkey's pics? It was our first tummietote and JM totally fell in love with it. We now have 2 more (gifts for her 2nd diaversary). Donna was incredible to work with. If you haven't tried a tummietote yet, you absolutely have to! You can find them here:

(You caught me again, more T1D talk...I guess I can't escape it even if I try .)
Tragic Loss...
Okay, so softball pics are easy to post. I've been wanting to write again, but my heart has been heavy and I'm just not sure how to keep writing without acknowledging what happened. Like somehow, if I just kept writing regular Diabetes or Celiac posts, I wouldn't be real or authentic; because what has happened has changed me. I'm a bit more emotional, a little more nostalgic, and a lot more purposeful in my relationships.

Last week, our family experienced a tragic loss. My 23 yr old cousin died in a car accident. I know how hard it's been for our family and can't imagine the pain that my aunt, uncle, and other cousins (his siblings) are going through.

We're a very close family and seeing my dear cousin's heart break has been an added heartache for me. Yet, even while her heart is broken, her faith is strong. She finds solace in the knowledge that her brother is in heaven with Jesus.

While watching my aunt & uncle deal with the loss of their son, I was so touched to see God at work. He gave them such grace and peace. And His sovereignty was so clearly evident as all the pieces of the past few months came to light. I pray they continue to feel his comfort and peace as a new chapter in their lives begin, a chapter without one of their sons.

From the day of the accident to the 4 days following, life was a sprint. Our lives were consumed with grieving and preparing for the memorial service. His memory was ever present and all consuming. Now, the marathon starts. Life has moved on, but the loss is ever present in the background as we continue with the rest of our lives.

I've assured the girls that it's okay to talk about him. (I think they're afraid they'll make me cry.) I want them to remember all of the good times they had with him. I also told them how each of them reminds me of him. History Buff and he had a common love for Adventures in Odyssey. This sparked trivia wars which HB would plan and prepare for weeks in advance. They both also claimed "I can't breathe" when being tickled. =) SB and he had a lot in common. They were both middle children who played the role of peace maker. Like him, SB cares more about who she's doing something with, than what she's actually doing. JM will remind me daily of him, because she has the same "light up the room" smile.

His loss has been another reminder to take advantage of each day we've been given. Don't let another day go by without telling your family (& extended family) that you love them. And, it's been a reminder that through it all, He'll never let go of us. Thanks for letting me share my heart. And, thank you, Lord, for your faithfulness!

A worship song from his memorial service...

Thursday, June 9, 2011

It's Good To Be Back!

Where have I been? At the softball fields (pics later)! My hubby and I have spent the last few months coaching our daughters' 10U softball team. While it has been an absolute blast, a lot of stuff has been neglected...mainly our home and our nutrition! All those grab on the go meals...not so good! And my house? You don't even want to know...disaster! =)

I didn't have a sub job today, so I spent my morning checking out some GF aisles at our local Fred Meyer and Trader Joe's. I'd like to get to New Seasons, but not sure I'll make it today. I put a roast in the crockpot with some veggies and I am feelin' good! We'll see how good I feel once I begin the laundering and housecleaning..up next (probably why I'm procrastinating and writing a post).

Anyway, since my morning consisted of food, thought I'd add to the list of Celiac Sisters' approved GF foods (You'll notice most of these items are grab & go...haven't cooked/baked much due to softball).

The Celiac Sisters Recommend...

Enjoy Life Cocoa Loco Bars
Think Thin Bars (tangerine creamsicle, chocolate covered strawberry & creamy peanut butter)
Nature Valley Almond Crunch Bars
LaraBar (Peanut Butter Cookie)
Rudi's Wholegrain Bread
Udi's Bagels
Nature's Path Organic GF Waffles
Pizzicato GF Cheese & Olive Pizza (local pizza place)
Yoplait Light Yogurt (many varieties are GF)
Betty Crocker GF Chocolate Chip Cookies
Betty Crocker GF Brownies
Bob's Red Mill GF Shortbread Cookies (w/ Ghirardelli milk choc. chips of course)
Mary's Gone Crackers Sticks & Twigs Sea Salt
Chex Rice & Chocolate Cereals
Pirate Booty
Crunchmaster Rice Crackers

 Now, on to housecleaning...ugh!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Our GF Journey Begins...

The girls have been gluten free for 4 days. So far, so least they think it's good. Can I just say how blessed I am to have such positive and optimistic children? The Celiac Sisters are enjoying the new variety. At this point, we haven't all gone GF simply because of the cost. It is so darn expensive. A mini loaf of bread (and when I say mini, I mean mini) is $5 at Winco? Crazy...

We tried eating out with the Celiac Sisters for the first time this weekend, as GF. Let's just say, our first attempt started out quiet depressing, but ended well. I had checked for Godfather's Pizza locations that had GF options and one near us came up. We went there only to find out that the location did not offer GF options. My parents and sister had already ordered, so we had to go while they stayed to eat (I know they felt terrible about the whole situation, too). Chalk that one up to a learning first! On the way home, however, we passed a Bellagio's Pizza. We had never eaten there, but they boasted a GF pizza, so what the heck! At this point, we're depressed and starving. The girls were super excited because they had really been looking forward to pizza. We took one to go and the girls loved it...yeah for Bellagio's!

So, thus begins our journey with the Celiac Sisters!

So grateful we live in a time and place where GF foods are readily available (even if they are ridiculously expensive)!

So happy to have such great company along the way!

The Celiac Sisters highly recommend...

Bob's Red Mill GF Pancake Mix
Bob's Red Mill GF Chocolate Chip Cookies (supplemented with Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate Chips)
Bellagio's GF Cheese Pizza

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Celiac Sister(s)?

Last Friday (the 20th), we "celebrated" Kelsey's 2nd bittersweet! I love that we have grown so much individually and as a family over the past two years. I love that JMonkey's responsibility is recognized and celebrated. I love to see how her sisters show their love and concern for her. I love that my walk with the Lord has deepened. There is so much to celebrate. And yet, such growth comes at great cost. I think this cost is what reminds us not to take the things we have learned, or are learning, for granted.

Life has thrown a new curve ball at us, though its one we've been anticipating. JMonkey's endoscopy biopsy was positive for Celiac Disease. We've known for the past couple weeks, but have not had to go on the gluten-free diet because her case is so mild at this point. The GI doc felt it would be fine if we waited for Social Butterfly's biopsy results before changing everything...that was very welcome news!

Social Butterfly's endoscopy was yesterday. It went well and we should know the "official" results by Tuesday. However, because she is symptomatic, we will begin the diet this weekend. So, the Celiac Sisters have one last gluten meal to enjoy together. We'll "celebrate" this as well. After all, God will use even this to grow us. Just wish I wasn't feeling the growing pains...ouch!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Joyful Monkey's Story

Saturday's Topic: Saturday Snapshots

So, I'm gonna cheat a bit for today's topic (not really, but kind of). I've chosen to share the power point presentation I created to educate JM's class at school. There are many pics, but it's kind of a story, too! When she finally decided she wanted to share with the class, she helped me to come up with this. 
Hope you enjoy it...

*You'll want to select the full screen button in the bottom right hand corner if you want to read the words.

Friday, May 13, 2011

11 Things I've Done Because of Diabetes

Friday's Topic: Awesome Things

We wanna look on the bright side, right? We want to choose joy over anger and despair. I figure since I ranted about 10 things I hate about Diabetes, I should try to come up with 11 things I've done because of Diabetes for today's topic. The surprising thing is that I was feeling kind of guilty for my 10 Things I Hate About Diabetes post for Thursday's D-Blog Week and then when I logged on today (after the crazy blogger maintenance stuff yesterday), my post was gone. Well, that took care of it.

11 Awesome Things

11.   I've become acquainted with many of you in the DOC and it's been a privilege to do so!

10.   I've also met many other incredible T1D-Moms outside the DOC!

9.     I've learned more carb counts for food than I ever thought would be important!

8.     I've learned to pay attention to nutrition labels (even more so now, with the Celiac diagnoses)!

7.     I've become a more frequent blogger.

6.     I've learned to have more compassion because everyone has their own story.
5.     We've won a couple Sugar Boluses! =)

4.     I'm reminded each and every day what is truly important!

3.     I spend more quality time with my children!

2.     I rely on the Lord's strength each day, and especially each night.

1.     I feel the Lord's hand on me now, more than I ever had before! He constantly reminds me that I am his cherished child.