Precious Isabella is now in the third grade.  Although she is still in a contained autism classroom, she takes her specials and eats lunch with the general education children.

The third and fourth graders put on a wonderful play from a book called “Jabuti the Tortoise:  A Trickster Tale from the Amazon” by Gerald McDermott.   Their music teacher wrote the music and they spent three months learning to recite, play act, and dance.

It was delightful from the moment we arrived.  A number of children greeted Isabella; she is one of them.  This is such an answer to prayer!

When the children were on stage, Bells was just as engaged as the other children.  More so, actually, as she was waving to her mom throughout!

The reason we stay in a town with especially high rents is because Isabella gets a great education.  I wish this was true for all people on the spectrum.

I’m Back!

There is no such thing as “just a cold.”  They can be debilitating and that is what happened to me.  It has been a week and taking a shower still brings on exhaustion.  Oh, well, I have to catch up so the next few entries will probably be shorter than usual….

Hack, Cough

Yup, I have a cold.

Not happy about it but it isn’t as bad as it could be.  Could it be the “thieves” essential oil I have been dabbing twice a day?  Hmmm…..let’s see how long it lasts.”

Essential oils are a new thing for me this year.  Friends had been raving about them so it was time to check them out.

“Thieves” is a blend that is supposed to ward off colds and such.  I have been using it since January and this is the first cold I have had this year.  I have also been using it on Isabella and she has been sick but not as often or for as long.

The oils for pain have worked well for Himself but not for me.  The difference is either spiritual or because mine is from fms.  I will explain the “spiritual” if anyone asks.

Anyway, I am going back to bed now that Bells is off to school.  I will try to catch up with the challenge later or over the weekend.

Cough, cough.  heavy sigh


Something I might not have shared with you in the past is that, in the past, I have suffered from crippling panic attacks. It has been a while since I feared them but, this past week, that has changed.

Out of the blue, this past Tuesday I had a full blown attack. It popped up, seemingly, out of nowhere. I was so thankful that Isabella wasn’t with me as I have no idea how she might have reacted to her Booboo freaking out.

What does one of these attacks look like for me? The pressure in my chest makes me fear a heart attack. Sometimes some pain in my left arm almost convinces me. I tend to feel very hot. I believe I said out loud, “Oh, dear God, help me!” I left my seat in the living room and walked to the kitchen where I held on to the counter for dear life and remembered my training from the Claire Weekes book Hope and Help for Your Nerves .

Self talk:

You are having a panic attack
You have survived them before.
Accept that you are having this panic attack
Your heart is a very strong muscle and it will not explode.
Breathe and float through it.

Sounds too simple, right? Well, it took years for me to be able to work through this. Still, it is a horrible experience.

Why am I talking about this? Why do I talk about most things? To get the word out that we are not alone with our ills and heartaches. I could write about only rosey, wonderful things happening in my life and you could say, “Oh, what a lovely life she has!” Well, I do have a pretty good life but it is not all flowers and butterflys! It has ugliness in it. However, I always have hope.

Hope. How glorious is hope?! I know that this earthly shell is temporary and that I have a heavenly home being prepared for me. When I get there, I will not have panic attacks or fibromyalgia or weight issues. My Isabella will join me there and her autism will be left behind (Or maybe not because her autism is part of what makes her so special). My grammy, whose Parkinson’s stole her expressive face, will greet me with her smile. Oh, what a wonderful hope!


Along with the new neighbors, a dog, Fred, has been brought into the mix.  His name is Fred and he likes to lick toes, thus, his nickname, Fredlick.

He is a smallish black dog whose breed I have long forgotten.  My lease says no pets.  So does my neighbor’s.  However, the landlord is a dog lover so…..

It could be worse.  There could be two dogs downstairs.

Early, Very Early

Another change 2014 brought was my early risings (five’ish) on days that my Isabella is here by 6:30 AM.

I have been caring for my precious girl since she is an infant and it has always been my wont to sleep as late as possible.  This meant that I didn’t spend time with God until she was off to school nearly two hours later.

This is not the perfect way to start the day.

Ask my mom and she will tell you that, from the cradle, I have not woken up well.  It is best to stay away for at least a half hour.  However, my new routine has changed that…..on the four to five days a week Bells is with me.

With hot tea in hand, I go to my desk and start writing out my prayers (this keeps my attention on what I am doing) and reading my Bible.  Sometimes I work on a Bible study.  Saturdays I pray for everyone in the church directory (we have a small church).  Daily, I pray for family and missionaries I have a relationship with.

Not that time spent with God is limited to the waking hours.  It is an all day event.  However, time spent alone, in the dark, is the sweetest time of the day.

Dietary Changes in the Past Twelve Months

After researching which foods are good for one’s body and which are bad, I have come to the conclusion that there are very few conclusions to come to!  What fats are good, what are bad; which carbohydrates are good and which are bad…proteins, seeds vs. grains, oy!

The one thing that did make sense is that sugar is inflammatory and inflammation leads to heart disease.  The size of cholesterol particles in your blood (bigger is better), rather than your HDL and LDL,  and your inflammation level is what influences your chances of heart disease.

See this large molar here?  This is my sweet tooth.  Oh, I enjoy sweets so much.  However, I wanted to get off statins.  A year ago February, I went off of added sugar.  My cholesterol levels aren’t better, though my good cholesterol went up.  I don’t feel any different.  However, it is great to not be a slave to the sugar cravings.

It also feels good to not be lining the pockets of the doctors who have a monetary interest in Americans being on statin drugs.