Sunday, February 27, 2011


Do you ever get tired of it?

I sure do.

My life has had its share of drama.

I'm not talking about certain events that build up to a climactic ending. I'm not talking about a serious movie.

No, I'm talking about DRAMA! As in "drama-queen." As in "oh my goodness she did, WHAT?" As in "holy smokes, that girl is a fruit loop!"

Yeah, that kind of drama.

And, I believe, it is inherent in females.

Disagree if you must, but if you really think about it, 95% of the drama you have encountered has involved females.

Now... the dudes. Yeah. They get mad. They might even fight. But, they get over it a go on.

Girls? They don't know when to let go.

Now, before you call me judgmental.... and I know which ones are doing it right now, bear in mind the recent events I have gone through with frenemies and other acquaintances.

I like to think that I don't involve myself in drama as much as the typical gal. My hubby does a good job of helping me see a different angle and decide if the drama is worth it. And, you know what? Usually, it isn't.

So, that is where I am. Trying to avoid drama. I wish some of you would try to avoid it. You know who you are.... the ones that read hear and proclaim you don't read here. LOL. ;-)

There is a good side to drama.... but it is small and hardly worth it. It makes you feel as if you've found the "Fountain of Youth." Because, really.... I know many 7th grade girls who act better.

Yes.... middle school and high school had its fair share of drama.... but back in the day, it was serious! I mean, "She looked at my boyfriend and then told her friend, who told Tommy, who said to Gina who promised not to tell me (but she did) that she wanted MY man and that she was going to kick my butt."

You laugh..... you know I'm true.

You graduate. You go to college. You get married. You get a job. You go to a reunion..... and you get DRAMA! No.... it doesn't go away. I won't even TELL you the things I have witnessed at reunions.... both school AND family. If I did..... well, that would lead to MORE DRAMA!

Needless to say, this "Fountain of Youth" has affected so many..... for sure!

Recently, I posted on a blog that is sometimes.... um... controversial. I won't get into details. I don't feel that, 1) it's good story-telling and 2) I don't think I could do it coherently.

Basically, one party has it in for another party. And these people who don't even know me are trying to throw me under the bus for talking to her. (See? Female.)


I can say that. Easily. I don't know these people. They don't know me. I'm done.

I have been thrown under the bus by people who DO know me.... obviously, not well, but have decided to believe stuff abut me that isn't true.

As hard as it has been..... after the past few months I can finally say, "WHATEVER!"

Some folks just OOZE drama. Those are the people I'm trying to get away from.

Believe me, people. Your life will be a lot easier and a lot more pleasant if you cut the drama.

I know I'm trying to.

Monday, February 21, 2011


Another previous post.... from 2007. I'm a little lazy, of course. But, some of these are just too good. :) ENJOY!

What I'm about to tell you is true. It is almost unbelievable. When I tell others, the tears stream from all eyes. These are not tears of sorrow, empathy or pain. They are tears of hysterical, uncontrollable laughter. is laughter at my own expense. One would think that laughter such as this might be too hard to I said, it is unbelievable. Embarrassing? YES! So funny, I LOVE to tell this story.

To truly understand this story you need to put yourself into the scene. If you are a teacher or speaker, imagine that you are teaching 30 VERY bright 13 year-olds in an inner-city middle school. The kids are rough. The demographics are not important, but the age is. These kids understand a lot more than we would want them to know. If you are neither a teacher nor speaker, go back in time to a relatively difficult math class; a class in which the teacher is firm, sarcastic, but loved by the kids. Finally....imagine that teacher is pregnant!

The year is 2003. The place is my middle school classroom. The audience, about 30 boys and girls 12 to 13 years of age. The topic, be more specific, geometry...even more specific, congruence.

Now in order to prevent the brain-strain-pain that is hitting some of you (I won't mention any names, but I know who some of you are) I will not get technical and assume you know the term. Granted, you have all heard it, but for some of you, school was a LONG time ago and even if you remember hearing it, you might not have understood it. All that to say that the definition of congruence is basically same size, same shape.

I was always a fun teacher. I did cartwheels up and down the halls, walked across desktops and drew zeros around my room (on the walls in chalk). I allowed candy days as rewards and held lessons in various parts of the school. I was (and am, thanks to my newly renewed license) a good teacher. The parents liked me (most of them, anyway) because I was firm and I pushed rote memorization of multiplication tables. The kids loved me because I brought my life into the classroom. They knew my children. They knew my husband. They knew I could get mad at them for doing the stupid. They knew that I loved them from the bottom of my heart.

Knowing what a good teacher does, I was always on the lookout for good examples. These examples needed to reach out to the children to help them attach to the core of the lesson. It's not enough to read from a book, copy it on paper and hear it from the teacher. A good teacher reaches for ideas and presents concepts in multiple ways in order that he or she may reach every type of learner.

SO, here I am in pre-algebra. This class is an Honor's class for 7th grade. These kids are smart, but some, like me, have a hang-up in geometry. Knowing this, I really worked (and still do) when presenting concepts dealing with geometry. I didn't want to lose anyone. We were learning about congruence. We discussed, made models, measured no avail. I knew I had to cover it again after seeing their first test.

I have them repeat after me over and over again.

me - "What is congruence?"

them -"Same size same shape." (this is done in monotone...I was quite pleasant and chipper.)

me - "What is congruence?"

them - "Same size same shape."



Finally, I reach for one more example. I say, "OK, you know when you show up at school wearing the same shirt as your best friend? You are Twinkies." (y'all remember using that term? They understood. So then I say, "For example Brian (NOT his real name, but it was a boy) gets up one day, looks in the mirror and sees his Twinkie."
There it just hung there (no pun intended) in the silence. Nobody moved. Nobody even breathed. They all waited for the reaction of the speaker.

Realizing immediately the faux pas, I tried to recover. I couldn't pretend it didn't happen. I had already turned various shades of red. I couldn't brush it off, because DUDE...the teacher just referred to a....YOU KNOW! So I said, "Hmmmm. THAT didn't sound real good, did it?"

The class burst out laughing. There was a sense of relief as the students were finally able to release the toxins and take in fresh air.

After owning up to this horrible event to some co-teachers, I drove home and chalked it up to an interesting, but successful, lesson taught by one, but learned by all. The next day, I swallowed my pride, walked into my classroom only to find some Twinkies on my desk.

That class, to this day, contained my favorite students of all time. I love them all.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


This is a repost from 2006:

Everyone has rules. There are rules, as in: "THOU SHALT NOT...." These rules are pretty common sense. I mean, it's not right to go out and shoot someone. The rules against lying and coveting are the ones that are so easily broken, I should think.

There are other rules, as in: "IT'S AGAINST THE LAW TO....." Again, you don't go shooting someone, though you don't get thrown into jail for lying to your mom. These rules can have some pretty severe consequences...from paying a fine to going to jail to going to "the bad place." (Here is where you get to put your fingers on top of your head....make little horns....and kind of growl in a sinister voice "the baaaad place!")

Then there are the rules that really have no serious consequence. These rules are more self-imposed. They come from personal experience, like when you touch a hot burner you learn to not do that again. The consequence was painful, but was experienced only once. This could be a life rule.

I have a few life rules that I would like to share. Some of these are...well, ALL of these, to my way of thinking, are common sense. It is almost laughable to think that some of you do not hold to such rules. However, to enlighten some and entertain others, I will post some of my life rules...and hopefully, a bit of reasoning behind it.

Life Rule #1: If you HAVE to smell stinks! For example: If you pick up a sock off the floor and you have to smell it to see if it stinks....well, YUCK! Just wash it anyway. What is ONE SOCK! This holds true for various other objects: undies, used dishrags, lunchmeat, MILK!

Life Rule #2: Do NOT...I NOT consume milk or other items past the date stamped on the carton or can. HELLO!!!! There is a reason there is a date on the milk. MILK GOES SOUR!!! Some see the date and, since the date has JUST passed, they believe they are in a "milk is OK" window. So what do they do? They smell it. PLEASE refer to Life Rule #1.

Life Rule #3: Always proofread your emails before you hit send. You do NOT want to sound like an idiot. Now...the word can be debated, so let me clarify. You do not want to seem like an uneducated moron because you forgot to hit spellcheck (let me assure you, I will be hitting that very button in about 4 minutes.)

Life Rule #4: ALWAYS double check your "to" box on emails. How embarrassing if Daddy were to read a seductive page of poetry meant ONLY for your beloved. (The thought is not only embarrassing, but a bit disturbing, as well.)

Life Rule #5: Be on time. I say this to myself and for myself. You do NOT want to get into a habit of being late all the time. With 4 kids, I know that it is difficult, and it is something I battle constantly. However, being late is a bad habit. Those who are always dealing with your lateness...well, they don't find you very trustworthy...I promise.

Life Rule #6. Be a TRUE friend. Sometimes that means offering advice. Sometimes it means shutting up. Be wise....learn when to shut your mouth and offer a shoulder. I have dealt with a few issues in which a person had a mouth too big for her head. How the name of friendship and "maturity" this person has alienated some and misled others. And in my book, she is not one whom I can and will trust.

Life Rule #7: Remember God gave us TWO ears and ONE mouth...there is a reason for that. Learn which to open up and when. *hint....when one is open, the other must be closed. Again...I am preaching to myself.

Finally, Life Rule #8: Pray every day. Pray to the point that prayer, and calling out to Jesus, becomes a natural reaction to any problem, big or small.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Today, I am nervous. Really. Nervous.

I'm not normally a paranoid parent. In fact, I take most catastrophes in stride. Blood does not bother me.

But, this ear thing..... I feel quite disconcerted.

When we had the bandage removed, I was told that if it "weeps" we would have to start dressing it.

"Sure, doc. No problem."

Well, yesterday morning, my son woke to a "dry" ear. It is hard to clean because there is "baby skin." (Ha.... I had to clarify to my son that it wasn't skin from a baby, but brand new skin.) I don't want any of the dried blood to pull the new skin, so I'm being quite gentle.... in fact, "avoid" is probably a better word.

BUT, I do assess everyday. I look at it SO closely each morning and night so that I may note any changes.

Well, last night, I noticed it was a bit.... gummy. You know when you have "rug burn?" That kind of gooey, almost gelatinous-like, blood-tinged fluid? Well, it's that...... is that "weepy?" Does it need to be dressed? Does he do that? Do I do that? Does he need to be assessed? Can you hear my voice getting higher as I start to reach panic-mode?

Not being used to seeing my boy head-on and seeing a 2nd ear.... quite frankly, I'm all freaked out that it's gonna just fall off his head. What if he bumps it at school today? Does "fresh" skin peel off easily? Will it split? I JUST DON'T KNOW..... and I'm freaked.

When talking to my hubby last night, I was trying to talk myself out of calling because I didn't want to be the "paranoid mom." Embarrassing. However, this ear is costing a lot of money..... A LOT. OF MONEY! They can take my phone call. They can take 10 phone calls!

The nurse is in surgery. She will call back, hopefully, within the hour.

Another concern is the area of son's rump where the skin was taken. It has been covered with what appears to be Saran Wrap. Very expensive Saran Wrap. Anyway, it has been keeping the patch covered..... prevents air from reaching it, thus, no pain. That is all well and good. The covering can be removed tomorrow.


I looked at it yesterday and was nothing short of horrified.

The "blister" (the part of plastic that was filled with fluid [expected]) started to ooze. It didn't pop, but seeped out the side. That is no surprise. It's on his rump. He walks, sits, lies down.... all that movement.... the liquid is going somewhere.... like out the side of the plastic.

OK. That is not alarming. Last night, when inspecting the tush, I noticed some of the plastic had kind of wrinkled up ACROSS the patch of removed skin. That CAN'T be comfy. On top of that, where the liquid has been escaping.... well, he looks like he has a rash. :-(

I feel like a terrible mom since I didn't notice this happening. It has been itching, so I have been leaving it alone.... don't want to draw attention to it. I guess that was a mistake. He hasn't been able to be bathed with all this "stuff" going on.... I've been ragging/sponging him down. :-(

I can remove the plastic tomorrow, but I might do it tonight so I can get him all cleaned up.

BUT, THEN.... the question is.... will it be OK to not be covered anymore? Do I treat it with an ointment? Should I cover it with a pad?

Oh, what I wouldn't give to be able to just keep him home another week to get him more healed up. :-/

So, here I sit. Waiting for the phone to ring. Not willing to even leave the phone, lest I miss the call somehow. I NEED to hear from the nurse... NOW. I need to know if I should go bursting into the school and remove him from school. Does he need a protective bubble? Anyone know where I can get one?

You know, this wouldn't be happening if my hubby were home. He is the one that helps me talk out things. He can see what I'm talking about and help me to make decisions.

I blame him.

Ha..... not really, Honey.

I love you!


Phone call returned. We "soaked" off the saran wrap.... that is truly what it was. LOL! AND it was not wet..... meaning new skin is now formed.... THAT is great. So, he runs around in only boxers, but will double up on undies at school.... 1 to keep it from rubbing and 2nd to soak up any possible oozage.

The ear.... it was/is weeping and I had to get the crusty stuff off... which scared me because I didn't know how it would react to the new skin. I was able to bathe him as normal, so I washed his hair and let the kid shampoo sit on the ear for a bit to soften and loosen the "scabs." I then used q-tips to gently clean away the area.

Finally, I am to dress it with a bit of gauze that has a bit of saline on it for a few days (changing every few hours) and then assess Monday..... so basically go several days, and look again.

The ear will stop "weeping" as the swelling goes down. As the swelling goes down, the ear will start to lay back on his head.

And, I was assured by my fabulous pediatrician that the ear will not, in fact, fall off.

Saturday, February 05, 2011

My Friend

I have this friend on facebook. I DO know her IRL. I know her sister. Her mom. Even her nephew. She has a wonderful outlook. She has a passion for the Lord and the Word of God. AND, she is having a hard time.

Her issue, to my knowledge, is that she doesn't know how effective she is being.

I know how she feels.

She is hurting because some that probably need to "hear" her words, don't acknowledge what is being said. I can imagine that some are being a bit ugly toward her, too.

I can only go by my own experience on that.

I had a "friend" who did not..... um.... appreciate the fact that I am confident in my faith.

It is a hard thing to go through. Is it persecution? Gosh.... I don't know that I would go that far. We are told that we are judgmental and intolerant. We are told that we "just don't know" what is in store in the here-after.

See.... that is where the actual conflict is. We DO know.... and because others don't seem to, then they attack our position, instead of searching it out on their own.

I am sorry for my friend. Not sorry as in pity. But, I do empathize with her hurting heart right now. I pray that she doesn't listen to the nay-sayers. I pray that she continues to post what God puts on her heart.

Specifically, to my friend: It is not your job to make sure that everyone reads what you say, or takes it to heart. It is not your job to make sure that this opens up meaningful dialogue between you and the reader. Your job is to listen to the Most High and post what He impresses upon you to post.

Remember, Jesus ministered in "small settings," too. You will reach the one who needs to read at the time. God will make sure of that.

Galatians 6:9 ~ And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

Thursday, February 03, 2011


February 1st brought the 2nd surgery for my sweet boy. If you click on some of these links, you will kind of get an idea of our journey:

The day before my hubby and 3rd son made the trek to the hospital to begin all of the pre-op stuff. Along with their departure came weather. Bad. Weather.

I had debated dropping off my 3 other children at school, then going to the hospital to sit through the surgery and recover and then return to pick up the boys. I never got the chance as icy conditions closed every school in the metroplex.

All that aside, let me give you a run down of what went down.

The boys left about 1:30 Monday afternoon. They went for pictures of #3s ears. He had vitals taken. And then the surgeon, and his Fellow, checked out the ear and gave last minute instructions.

After, Daddy and son ate at the food court of the area mall. I don't know. I would have chosen something different, however, I'm sure Daddy did what #3 wanted. Then, they went to see "Gulliver's Travels" and had even more junk food.

They stayed in a hotel overnight, as they had to check in at 6 in the morning. Good thing, too, as the ice on the roads would have prevented the trip, in all likelihood.

Number 3 went back right away to have more vitals taken, change into his gown, and drink his "goofy juice." After watching a bit of a movie, the goofy juice kicked in and #3 was wheeled to surgery.

Unlike the last 5 hour surgery, this one only took about 3 hours. He still had a little nausea coming out of the anesthesia, but he was able to eat a bit sooner than last time. They braved the weather and made it home about 5:00 p.m.

SO, what did they do? Well, they actually cut around the cartilage and lifted his ear off his head. So, think about that.... when it's lifted, on the back of the ear you have bare cartilage and where the ear was, you have skull. To cover that, the surgeons performed a skin-graft. The skin came from his heiney-bo.... and that is the most uncomfortable for him right now. It's just itchy.

Before we get to the pictures, let's talk money.

The surgeries.... well, I don't even know how much all 3 will cost, but so far, we have been billed about $100,000. At this point, we have paid about $500 for the first. I don't know how typical this is, nor do I know what will be our final out-of-pocket for the first surgery. Our surgeon's people and the insurance company are still working on things.

For the 2nd surgery, we have not received a bill yet, but we have paid about $3,000.

We are praying, of course. Praying that we get it all worked out. Praying that we don't have to pay NEAR what has already been billed, much less what will be billed. But, you know what? God provides. There has never been any question as to whether, or not, we would do this.


Now, on to the pictures:

In the waiting room awaiting pre-op

Picture time

This place has fabulous cupcakes

Even if it's not the healthiest, he DESERVED a chocolate cupcake AND a DP

Where the surgeries are taking place

On the giant caterpillar

Weighing in

Tall enough?

Taking vitals

The last day "Verne" will look like this. Yes, we named the ear "Verne." And his chest scar? "Steve"

Dr. Fearon (on the right) and his Fellow

Waking up on the big day

Going up to the surgical floor

Playing in the "tree-house" while waiting

MORE vitals

Waiting for the rolling bed

They have the same movies, but they are much more interesting when they belong to someone else

Drinking "goofy juice"

I feel so bad that he was alone while waiting. And when I say, "alone,".... well, look at the place. #3's was the only surgery going on at the time.

In recovery

Lots of fluid. The yellow is a gauzy bandage stitched to the back of the ear.... protecting the new skin

No words. :-(


The rolling chair... always fun

The ear on Feb. 3rd. The surgery was Feb. 1st.

I know this is a bit graphic, but my goal with these posts is FULL-DISCLOSURE. I had trouble finding out this stuff. I want anyone going through this to be able to know about the money issues, the doctors/hospitals we deal with and the actual procedure. The "bloody" pack is actually expected and normal. As long as the color doesn't change and there is no "off" smell, we are good. You can see, the top left of the "patch" the raw skin.

As horrible and painful as it all looks, this is #3 on Feb. 2nd.... playing "ice-soccer" in the backyard. I had to call him off the trampoline several times.

To all my friends and family reading this, thank you for the continued prayers.

To anyone researching this, if you have any questions, I am happy to answer them. Just leave a comment and a way to contact you. I will tell you all I can.