I love my girls. They are both turning into such amazing young women. Angelica is dealing with cancer treatment and being so brave (and winning) and Alexandra is showing such maturity in dealing with the changes at home. (And I really really really love Patti.)

Angelica is already a teenager and Alexandra is right on the doorstep, and this brings a whole new set of parenting challenges. I’m not freaked out about parenting teenage girls, but I am aware of what the world is like for them.  I make a point of watching the shows that they watch and we still get copies of their incoming e-mails. I want to know what messages they are receiving and how they are processing those messages.

The messages girls receive seem to be complete opposites. There is so much opportunity for women today to rise up and be as successful in any field as they desire, and the examples of successful women in business, politics and at home are easy to find. At the same time there are more messages in mainstream media that show girls in relationships that are at best demeaning… In most cases it seems that cheap meaningless physical relationships are the norm and I hate this! The message seems to be that what is inside has value and tremendous opportunity, but what is outside is not good enough, not valuable and not deserving of faithful devotion.

I want my girls to believe that they can be successful and at the same time they deserve to be respected in their relationships (not that they should be dealing with relationships yet), and that there is nothing meaningless about them, their bodies, or their feelings. (I’ve got a whole different post to write about the standards I want my boys to rise to as they become men gentlemen).

I can say a lot of words, but finding examples of this message in the real world is a harder task. It’s not that these messages don’t exist… Last year there was an episode of Bones where one of the main characters was talking to her daughter about relationships and sex. It was an exceptional conversation, completely accurate and a scene I would like to show my kids.

I heard this song on the radio a few weeks ago and I instantly fell in love with it.  I dedicate it to all my girls. Patti, Angelica, and Alexandra… You are AMAZING, JUST THE WAY YOU ARE:

Happy Canada Day – Extended Stay Update

I was reading through the blog and realized that I never updated on the status of Angelica and whether she had to stay for 3 days or 14. Being as today is July 1st, and we were getting checked for an infection on June 26th and that makes 5 days… We did in fact test positive for a gram negative bacilli bacteria. There are apparently a whole family of bacteria with this class, and I don’t know enough to adequately explain where it came from, but I do know that after two days of receiving the antibiotic specific to the bacteria, Angelica is feeling much much much better.

It also means that we get the extended stay of 10 – 14 days. (which would put us going home next Wednesday to Sunday sometime).

Now that Angelica is feeling better…

we are making kale chips

Playing Settlers

But all this comes with a price… My mom (Mrs Culley Sr.) has not been able to see the baby or visit Angelica for over a week because she had/has a cold, and if you know Merrilyn, she loves her grand kids and would never go that long without seeing her grand daughter in hospital, and would never never never wait that long to see her new-born grand son.

But you might be saying… the baby is home now, why can’t Merr go see the baby at home and how could that effect Angelica??? Well, Angelica’s immune system is so low right now that we have to keep the members of our immediate family illness free, or else we have to stop visiting. And right now, Patti cannot go without being able to at least visit on a regular basis. So people with coughs and colds need to keep away from our whole family. (My mom has been amazing at understanding all this and I would like to thank her as this is really really hard for her.)

Well keep praying that she doesn’t get further infections, that we have the least amount of complications and that our family gets reunited very very soon.

Alex Hope Elementary

One of the things that Angelica has said is how amazing it is to see all the people that are praying for her and that care about her. There have been a lot of people and groups that have been amazing, but I want to highlight one special community. We have received an amazing amount of support from Angelica’s School.

Alex Hope Elementary

We have three kids that have been going to Alex Hope this last year but we just moved there before the beginning of this year. So we’ve only given them a year to get to know us. Then at the end of the year, we break the news that one of their ‘new’ grade 7 grads has been diagnosed with leukemia.

This community has been amazing… really amazing. Each of the classes has been very supportive. The parents in Jeremy’s class have organized fund-raisers. The principle handed me a significant number of gift cards for groceries. Others that we barely know have walked up and handed us small gifts. And we are stunned. (We’re sorry if we give you a deer-in-the-headlights look if you’ve come up to talk to us, we are just so overwhelmed.)

And, we’ve found out some of the costs of this process on our family and our budget, and the help is truly amazing.

We are very blessed to be a part of this amazing community. Thank You Alex Hope!

It’s On……

I’ve joined Weight Watchers Online……..again.

I did this once before and lost a bunch of weight and well, things have gotten outta hand again and I gotta do something.

So, here we are starting this all once again. I wish I weren’t, but the truth is…..I am.

I’ve got to lose some weight and if I just dick around, I’ll be the same weight (or more) in 3 months or 6 months from now. And so, here it goes……..

I’ve pounded down a 2 point green smoothie that consists of 2 cups of spinach, 1/2 a cup of frozen mango, 1 pear, a cup of water and some ice.

We’ve got brunch with my family to celebrate my brother’s 30th birthday and I counted that out at between 10-12 points depending on whether I have toast or not……I have a total of 30 points per day.

I know that you all are just loving all this “points” chatter, aren’t you? Don’t worry. I promise that I’ll talk about something else beside weight loss and food and points.

I’ll take a current photo today so that I can see where I’m at and then later….where I’ve come from.

Oh, the joys….this is so much fun..NOT! But, it will be worth it! Right?

As Close to Nothing as Possible

I’ve been watching the 30 Days of Nothing over at Owlhaven, and thinking of giving it a try.

So, as of tomorrow, we will be starting our own 30 days of Nothing. I’m not exactly certain how it all plays out for us…I’ll be talking to Jon tonight and then hopefully I’ll have a plan all set in place for tomorrow, but as of right now the plan is to do some form of the 30 Days of Nothing. One that works for us.

This should be interesting. I’m not a big shopper, but I do buy more than I should from time to time. So stick around and see how well, or poorly I do this month.

In other news, I slept for 11 hours last night. At 8pm,I laid down to read with Jeremy and then cuddled with him and fell asleep. Then we woke up this morning at 7:00am….Wow! Now, the baby was up at 2:30am and again at 4:30am, but still I got a 6 hour uninterrupted stretch, and I feel SO AMAZING! I’ve managed to get quite a bit done today. It’s one of those things that if I went to bed every night at that time, I’d be able to get up earlier and get things done. I think that the 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep is the trick. Even though Siah goes down around 7:30-8pm every night, if we go to bed around midnight, and then he’s up at 2or 3ish….well, that’s only 2 or 3 hours that we are getting before the first interruption….and that’s just not enough in my books. I know that I could let him cry it out, but I’m not there yet….not saying that we won’t get there, but not just yet.

Well, tomorrow is the official GRAND OPENING – I’m laughing at that because it sounds so official. – The OFFICIAL GRAND OPENING of the store.

For the first week, we will be having a buy 2 and get a 3rd of equal or less value for free.

Check it out…..there should be something that you’d like for yourself or even for a gift.


I’m not feeling so great. I have the WORST sore throat, and IT SUCKS!

It’s the start of the weekend, and I’m tired. I think that Siah’s been feelig the same as me, and he’s been up and up and up and up and up and up and up and up and up…..at nights. It’s been a party.

Last night, just to try to get some sleep for myself….I just kept him in bed with me, and well – if it were possible to get even less sleep…yah it happened.

If he’s feeling at all like I am – well, that’s just nasty.

Okay, enough moaning.

I gave a few samples of the deodorant to a few people, and the response that I’ve had so far has been really good.

I just need to find some good containers to put the finished product into, and I think that I’m gonna sell it. It is truly THAT GOOD!

Jon even “tested it out” with out me knowing. He went 2 days between applications, and said that even at the end of the second day that he was only starting to smell and from only one pit.

Thanks for the info, Honey! Way to test it out for me.

But, now you all know that you should be able to go for two days in between applications -good info, eh?

I’m gonna go and make a HUGE pot of tea and sip and sip and sip and sip and sip until the tylenol that I took kicks in.

Long Time….eh?

I went on vacation….now I’m back…


I have a bazilion pictures that I’m going through. trying to unpack. Take Geli to French Camp, do laundry, deal with a one year old – man are they a lot of work – buy school supplies, exercise, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

I actually have something really cool that I want to share, but I gotta go to bed ’cause 5am comes around really early.

Hopefully I’ll be able to get some time tomorrow.

Talk to you soon.

While you are waiting for me….what have YOU been up to?

Thinking Out Loud Here….

I have an idea.

I’m sure it’s not a new idea, but still, I’m not currently a part of anything like this, and it’s something that I hold near and dear to my heart, and something that I’m invested/ing in…and well….I just enjoy it a ton.

I am still in the planning stages, but I think that this could be something that could be a lot of fun, and could help some, and it could possible grow and become something that could be helpful to me in the future.

See, here is my idea….

I am LOVING learning about eating healthy and cooking good food and living healthy and living simply and I run into people that ask for my recipes, and well….I wondered if anyone would be interested if I started to write up a newspaper or flyer or bulletin or somthing like that. It would have tips and ideas, recipes, and things to think about…all geared towards living healthy, living simply and all of what that entails…

I’m by no means an expert but I do have a fair amount of recipes that we currently eat that are healthy and DELICIOUS. I like to try and come up with “normal” food that takes your food choices or allergies or intolerances into consideration. I like to get a hold of recipes that someone I know has actually tried, and that they taste like actual food, and not YUCKY. Now, I know that taste is relative, but I’d like to think that I make delicious food….I’d really hope that was the case…regardless, the recipes would all be ones that we currently use and eat, either regularly or for special occasions…and then there could be product reviews, and tips on how to eat healthy for as cheap as possible….’cause I’m all about saving money….all this and more….

So, What do you think? Would you be interested in recieving something like this?

It’s the kind of thing that I might start a bit smaller and then grow over time….I might start out doing these newsletters for free for the first few, and then charging a subscription or something like that…

It’s not all worked out, but I wonder how much interest there would be in something like this?

If this is something that you’d be interested in – could you comment and let me know or if you know someone who is currently trying to eat healthy or healthier or has allergies or intolerances or something like that, then could you send them this way, and if we can figure out if there is some interest in something like this, then I could get working on putting something together sooner rather than later.

This is something that I’m TOTALLY excited about, and would love to share, but I don’t want me to be the only one that I’m doing this for….so….let me know if you or anyone you know would be interested.