Monday, May 30, 2011

More Me Than Me

The 8th grade moms got together for a book exchange (fun thing to do right before summer, I'm telling you, organize one of these babies, you won't be sorry). Got my Margarita and cozied up to two of my laugh-until-you-pee-your-pants friends and proceeded to do just that. They totally had me going in under five minutes, and I've been chuckling to myself ever since (that was two weeks ago). Can enough be made of friends that make you laugh? I think not.

Anyhoo (that makes me laugh just saying that), one of the women had been Woohoo's mentor for a project when she was in eighth grade three years ago. Because this woman is not only funny, she is also kind and generous and makes incredible jewelry, and even cooks, and does art, and gardens too. Are you starting to hate her? It's impossible. Believe me, I've tried. Anyhoo (still funny), she had recently had Woohoo over for breakfast before a late start day, because she wants to keep that special connection they formed three years ago. She was telling a story on Woohoo and she turned to me and said, "She's so much like you."

"I know, she's me times ten," I said.

The other pee-your-pants-funny friend said, "She really is. She's more you than you."

We laughed ourselves silly over that truism, then returned to beating all the dead horses we already were having great laughs over, because when you think about it, re-laughing is even better than the original laugh.

It's fun to watch and listen to Woohoo be Woohoo, and see just how much more me than me she really is. World? You've been warned.

Photo from

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Happy to Help

You know how there are just some people you meet and you love them immediately, and you'd do anything for them? You just know the world smiles on them, and everywhere they go they experience that phenomenon of benevolence.

Rojo is one of those people. People nearly fall over themselves trying to make his path smoother and his life as pleasant as possible. It's happened all his life and I have every reason to believe it will continue, but still, scarcity mentality creeps in now and then and I go into a panic thinking what will happen to him if/when I'm not around to run the show?

We are super happy that Rojo has gained 23 lbs. in the last 18 months. He needs to gain at least another 23, and that's if he doesn't grow an inch, which he seems to do just about every day, however. So, while we are on the right track, we have a ways to go. The boy likes glazed donuts from 7-11, what can I say? I did not introduce them to him, but am definitely his accomplice in that crime, now. We go to 7-11 almost every day. We go so often and have visited so many, we now have our favorite, which, thank you, God, also happens to be the closest to us.

We had gone in enough times only to discover that all the glazed donuts were gone, leaving disappointed, that pretty soon we started hearing from our favorite employee, "I save for you!" Then she'd dash off into the back room and come back with two she'd secreted away just for us. "I know you trying to gain him weight," she'd say, since I'd let her in on that several dozen donuts earlier.

That employee works Monday through Friday 9-5 and we love her. We had yet to really get to know the  weekend 9-5 employee, but today we went in and he was working. We recognized him and said hi. He looked Rojo right in the eye and tried to initiate conversation (something I always appreciate). Rojo did okay and even kept the conversation going for a few beats. We walked straight to the donut case and there were four beauties just waiting for us. We took all four. Two to eat in the store while we "browsed," and two to eat after lunch. Rojo talked me into a Starbucks Frappucchino in an oversized bottle that will take me three days to consume, and we approached the register. The twinkly-eyed man behind the counter had clearly been talking to our M-F friend. "I save for you next time. You come and they are gone, you tell me, and I save in the back. How many you want? Two? Four? I save for you every day."

We assured him that two was all that was really "necessary," and thanked him profusely. "I happy to help," he said.

And as Rojo polished off donut #2 and we left the store, I realized just how true that was of most people. And as I vowed to make sure I went in each day to purchase those saved donuts, I also vowed to not forget that "happy to help" is not just something nice that people say, it's a basic truth.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Continue to Spread the Word to End the Word

Take 30 seconds and click here.

Mary Day

Had a free morning Tuesday, and am all too aware that summer is around the corner, and I need to start building my reserves. Yes, Rojo has a summer "job," and that will help tremendously, however, it does not start until after the 4th of July, and well, it is feasible I may be crazy long before then if measures are not taken to prevent that.

So. Looked outside and it was not rainy or cold (which it will be the rest of the week), and I felt the need for some serious Mary ju-ju, so took myself on over to The Grotto. Timed is just right and got to do the gift shop (bought Mary candles and Mary bracelets, naturally) and the lower grounds before the daily Mass, then did the upper grounds after that. Really nice way to spend a couple of hours, if you ever find yourself in the Portland area. 

They say they are a place of solitude, peace and prayer, and I found that to be true. Had I put more thought into this, I would have arranged to go with any number (or all) of my Mary loving friends. Since I decided about 20 minutes before I left that that was the plan, I did it alone, and thus, the solitude. I'm glad the way it worked out, since solitude is something I need more than most, I think, and don't prioritize enough. I need to put "Solitude" on the calendar with barbed wire around the edges, and not piss the days away like I am prone to do.

Here's the Mary candle I bought and left to burn for seven days. There are special intentions illuminated by this candle. Lord, hear our prayer.

One of two banks of holy candles. Sobering to watch people light their candle, bow, kneel, pray and let their prayers be lifted from their heavy hearts.

The shrine in the middle of the two banks of holy candles.

All in all I was gone two hours, and yet when I returned home I felt like I was coming back from vacation: disoriented, relaxed, out-of-touch with the world. Note to self: take more 2-hour vacations.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Rolling Out the Red Carpet

We live in a culture that rolls out the red carpet for celebrities. We (me included) just love watching people that have starred in favorite movies, get all dressed up and parade around for us to see (and have opinions on their outfits).

Somehow I have found myself as a spokesperson for including special ed. students in Catholic education. It wasn't anything I set out to do, I just wanted Rojo to have the same opportunities that Woohoo has. It has morphed into meetings and visits around the area (and beyond) "selling" the idea that special ed. students, while not necessarily college bound, are an asset to education, not a liability, and that by serving them it's not just a matter of social justice (which it is, and not enough can be made of this), but that it's a win-win for everyone, when done right.

In some faith-based schools and communities/cities the red carpet is rolled out for different learners and/or those with different physical abilities. Happily, this has been the case and will continue to be the case for Rojo and our friend J.  We've been blessed by being in the right place at the right time with the right people that get it, and the right network of friends and connections. Sadly, this is not the case for all our friends, and certainly not all special ed. students seeking a faith-based option.

I am meeting with a woman next week that wants me to answer the question, "If the sky were the limit, what would you want to see faith-based schools have in place for kids with learning and/or physical differences?" I'm starting the list with red carpets in every school.

Photo from

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Skill Sets

I've been thinking a lot about my skill set. I've probably already blogged about this, but a sharp memory is not part of my skill set. Basically there are a tiny handful of things I do well, and a list of about 1,000 things I don't do well, or at all. Huge categories of things I simply suck at.

Fought against that for years, even took a few lessons on things I thought I "should" be good at, or "should" know how to do, at the very least. Didn't take. I suck at all sports. All. Although Kathleen and I will go to our graves swearing we "won" a marathon - first walkers through the finish line, 5:03. Not bad. In fact, now that I mention it, I'm going to put "walking" on the list of things I do well.

My SAT scores, IQ, F in college algebra, total lack of awareness of anything that's happening in the world (if it's not a headline on a magazine in the check out line at the grocery store, I don't know about it), all attest to the fact that I am very very average in many many things, and way below average on quite a number of others.

The gift of having a child with a developmental disability (pervasive, even), is that you see just how wondrous they really are, and with enough practice, you turn that around on yourself and see just how wondrous you are, too.

Had a great conversation with Terry the other day - we were talking about what we do well and what we do not, and we decided no more apologies. When asked to do something that we know we are simply no good at, our answer will be, "No, I'm not a ___________ person." The key is to trust that what we do do well, will be called upon, fulfill us, and in many cases, pay the bills. I believe it will, and belief is part of my skill set.

* Photo from

Friday, May 20, 2011

Compressed Time and Composite Characters

Good news! I sent my manuscript off to my agent. It's 293 pages and 79,759 words. I'm predicting my agent (hi, Laurie!) will suggest a whole bunch of things go. I'm predicting she'll want me to add a bunch. I'm pretty sure she won't say, "It's the most perfect thing I've ever in my life read and its on its way out the door to the biggest names in publishing." She is the boss, and I will do what she says, but one thing I'm not going to do is compress time or create composite characters - both common in memoir writing, and for reasons I understand, but can't abide.

This is my fourteen-year-story of coming to terms with what I believe to be Rojo's divinity (not that all kids aren't divine). It's about my spiritual journey accelerated by having a child that is special. It's about suffering that turns to blessings. It's about having to learn the same lesson(s) over and over and over again until they stick. It's about a perfectly imperfect life. And it's my life. And it's Rojo's life. And it's STM and Woohoo's, too. And the special people in our life. They each stand alone - none get rolled into one to make the story move forward.

My memory is flawed, and affected by menopause, post-traumatic stress and any other sundry human conditions, but to the best of my ability, what I wrote is what happened - in that order. It might be more exciting to move things all around, but then it wouldn't be memoir, in my opinion, it would be fiction.

So, in an effort to be authentic, I may be shooting myself in the foot - I guess we'll see...

Thursday, May 19, 2011

It on a Stick

All my faithful blog readers know just how much I love (and steal from) my friend Terry, aka "Toeless." If you can't get enough of her, and let's face it, who can? Go here to see her incredible Website and take advantage of her Authentic Branding Boot Camp!

Photo from

Top 10 Exciting Things I Did Yesterday While Not "Working"

10. Got down on my hands and knees and wiped some of the (filthy) moldings on the main floor

9. Vacuumed dog hair

8. Cleaned toilets

7. Went to three grocery stores

6. Picked up supplements from the naturopath

5. Picked up prescriptions at the drug store

4. Fixed a drawer that wouldn't close in the kitchen

3. Filled three yard debris bags

2. Paid bills

1. Took the dog in to the vet to have her anal glands expressed

(P.S. I'm turning the comment thingy back on - I appreciate that there are those of you that really want to leave me a comment. Thank you. I'm not sure how much commenting I'm going to do, so if that seems fair to you, then please, I'd love to hear your thoughts/reactions/etc. love.)

* Photo from

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

To Whom Much Has Been Given, Much is Expected

Luke 12:48 is a favorite of mine. I love that Bible verse. I try to live by that verse. At times that verse has bitten me in the ass. Problem seems to be in the word "much." I take "much" to mean "until I drop." Pretty sure that is not what "much" actually means.

I have been given so much. Wouldn't trade my life for anyone's. Nobody's. Not the people with nicer homes. Not the people that take fabulous vacations. Not with the ones that drive nice cars (or anything younger than 1997, for that matter). Not with the ones who have only typical children. Not with the ones with more time, money, energy, youth, reserves of every kind. Simply nobody.

Got the "You don't work, what do you do all day?" question recently by a well-meaning person. (BTW, I've decided that 90 - 99% of people are well-meaning. What do you think?) I was at a total loss on how to answer that question. It's not that I don't know what I do all day, but I felt it impossible to convey it to someone that is not married, does not have kids, let alone special needs kids, does not have a house to clean, etc., etc., etc. It is not that her life is not super busy - it is - it is just very, very different from mine, and so I simply said, "I try to help a lot of people."

That answer satisfied her, and then I spent some time (because I don't work, I have all kinds of time to ponder life's big questions) thinking about whether or not it satisfied me.

I know when I have caregiver fatigue when I get cranky, short-tempered and the incoming request to drive a forgotten _________ (camera, change of clothes, wallet...) out to someone, or pick up the last minute __________ (gift, prescription, gluten-free item), or any number of the thankless, not-that-important-but-important-anyway things I do on any given day, make me want to scream.

I know that I've landed on the magic formula when these requests illicit a I-am-so-grateful-I-have-the-opportunity-to-help response in me. When a friend needs to go on a walk to vent/process, or go have coffee to share something they're struggling with, and I can do that, I am grateful. When I can run an extra errand or two when I'm already out running errands, I am grateful. When I can meet with a mom whose child is going through the diagnosis process, I am grateful. When I can send an e-mail, a card, forward along a Website or resource, I am grateful.

To whom much has been given, as much as can be expected, but no more, is just right.

* Photo from:

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Greeter

A lot of you know that the wheels have been turning for several years to build a new high school program for kids with learning differences. I am very excited, relieved and honored to tell you that this program will open in the fall, and Rojo will be in the inaugural class. Really, not enough can be made of this. The program is going to rock. The program is going to change the lives of the kids in it. The program is going to change the lives of the kids not in it. The program is going to change the community and the community is going to change the larger community, and so on and so on and so on. May sound grandiose, but I believe it to be true. I've seen what's happened to the community Rojo is currently in, and I think that's one of the many reasons he's "here," to evolve thinking, simply by being himself.

Rojo has taken it upon himself to be the greeter at school. It started last year, he'd stand next to the principal at the top of the stairs that everyone has to walk up to get to their classes, and he'd say good morning to them. The principal was kind enough to share her post, although I don't think there was much she could have done to shut it down, even if she'd wanted to. He was a man on a mission.

This year Rojo has stepped it up. He simply must be the very first student at school. Despite the weather, he is there before even some of the teachers. He stands outside and greets each student/parent/teacher by name as they arrive. Sometimes middle names are included. Sometimes he asks, "How is your _________ (mom, dad, wife, husband, sister, dog...)" And sometimes there is an accompanying "I love you." Although I believe he loves each of the people that arrive, he somehow has figured out which people find that comforting to hear, and which might find it kind of creepy. I guess in the scheme of things this is a much bigger knowing than say tying shoes, differentiating between left/right, push/pull, behind/in front of, etc, which all still allude him.

Rojo has a month left of school before his big, big, let me say it again, BIG transition to high school. As much as we've worked and planned to make his next four (or more) years of high school an extension of all that's working for him now, including many of the same people/community, it will nonetheless be epic. I know there will be bumps. I know there will be things we put into place that will need to be readjusted, subtracted, tweaked and abandoned. I know that he will in many ways be a guinea pig, and the program won't be all that it's capable of being until he's long gone.

I also know that when he walks in the door each day he will be greeted by name, by at least one person and probably many. I know that he will be told he is loved by at least one person, and probably many. I know that with that foundation, anything else is a bonus, for isn't that what we're all looking for in the end? To be known, and to be loved.

photo from:

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Enough Has Probably Been Made...

... didn't expect my "super gay" comment to start a "thing," and "thing" might be too strong of a word, but it definitely took on a life of its own. Heard from many blog readers, two of whom just happen to be gay, neither one was offended by the term, and both felt it was PC.

It's given me a lot to think about. My favorite blogger, Michelle O'Neil has fed me such great things through the years of reading her blog. In this particular one she says succinctly, "perception is a mirror." I have long believed that concept, but that particular phrase was extra helpful. Anyway, ever since the "thing" with "super gay" I have taken a look in the mirror and seen that I am over-sensitive about certain words. Of course, there is zero tolerance for many, but do I need to flinch and nearly come unglued when someone says, "stupid?" They don't mean anything by it. They are not disparaging my child personally. They are using a word that nearly everyone uses. Period. That's the extent of it. It is not a loaded word, but I have made it one.

There have been many times in the last five years of writing this blog that I wonder what it is I'm even doing, why put my thoughts/ideas/fears/experiences and understandings down for everyone to read - what's the point? Then just about when I'm ready to wrap it up for good because it doesn't feel worth the occasional backlash, someone says something like this: "I really appreciate all your writing about Rojo and Rojo in public places. I don't have kids. I'm not close with anyone who has a special needs kid. I DO work at Trader Joe's and have opportunity to interact with special needs kids. Your writings have helped me do so in an easy going, go with the flow-type manner. I hope to be seen as one who 'gets it' to make the shopping experience easier on my customers."

And then I get back in the saddle again.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

No Offense

I know that I offended one of you, and perhaps there were more, in my recent post, Jean Shopping 101, when I said you needed a "super gay 'Denim Expert'" to really pull off the shopping experience. At least one reader felt I was perpetuating a stereotype. My intent was to retell my shopping experience, and that was part of my experience. I could have described the person without using those words, and I should have, but for me, those words are anything but derogatory. I felt he would have described himself the same way. I felt that anyone meeting him would have instantly known that about him. I felt it was like saying he was petite, brunette and tan - simply a fact, not name calling.

Nonetheless, I am sorry for not being more careful with my words, for not practicing what I preach.


I Believe You

While it's always nice to hear, "I love you," for me, it might be a toss up whether that's as nice as hearing, "I believe you." I have some baggage around not being believed. Not in general, in general I believe I'm quite believable, but there have been a few key pivotal times when I've been questioned. I know part of that is the phenomenon on being a child of an alcoholic - we struggle to know what normal is, and our powers of observation have so often been negated by those wanting desperately to keep the status quo.

I think many of us mothers of special needs children have had the experience where we just knew something was going on with our children, long before it was confirmed. We may even have told nothing was going on, it was all in our heads. My pediatrician told me on more than one occasion, that what I was observing was "just the difference between a boy and a girl." Had he just looked at me and said, "I am not worried, he is still within the 'normal' range of development, but if you think something is wrong, then I believe you."

I don't know how different our story would actually be had he believed me. I don't know how different any of the stories would have turned out at any of the various times I turned to a trusted person and was not believed,  but I know I would be different.

* Photo of Sanskrit "believe" from

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Jean Shopping 101

You're all sitting on the edge of your seat just dying to know if I was successful jean shopping yesterday, right? Thought so! Well, you'll be super happy to know that I am the proud owner of two pairs of the nicest jeans I've ever in my life tried on, let alone bought.

Here are the keys to successful jean shopping, if you ask me:

1. Don't be in a hurry - have a big window of time so you're not cramming it in between 200 other things on the day's To Do list (a favorite trick of mine)

2. Don't be hungry

3. Basically have all your bodily needs and functions handled before proceeding

4. Go at an off time

5. Have the store/department to yourself

6. Make sure you get a super gay "Denim Expert" that wants nothing more in life than to see your *^# look great in a pair (or two!) of jeans

7. Take a trusted and honest friend, preferably one with informed opinions and good fashion sense

8. Make sure that this trusted friend has covered Steps 1-3, too

9. Tell the "Denim Expert" that you don't know a thing about jeans, and to just start bringing them to you

10. Do not, repeat, do NOT look at the price tags

Monday, May 9, 2011

Understandable Confusion

Rojo had a busy weekend. Wanted to take his shower early Sunday evening, 6:00 PM, get into jammies and watch TV until bed. I was all for it. Got awfully quiet around here - even when he's watching TV, he's noisy. Humming. Tapping. Making do-do-do sounds to the tune of college fight songs, and my personal favorite, ring tones. Kicking the sides of whatever is near him.

I decided to take advantage of the bonus time and watch an episode of "Glee" on my computer, streamed instantly from Netflix. Have a love-hate relationship with "Glee." Don't love all the special ed./short bus jokes. Don't love that so much that I've almost stopped watching the show entirely, but there's enough going for it that I stick with it. If special ed was the only subject of jokes, and if the jokes weren't meant to make the jokers look ridiculous, I'd really have a very big problem, but that's sort of the point, I think, that those kids/people so much of society disregards, can really rock it when they all come together.

Anyway, back to Rojo. I went downstairs about an hour later and he stumbled down the stairs shortly after. Hair full of bed head, dingy look in his eyes, clearly confused. "What time am I going to school?"

"Tomorrow?" I asked.

"No, today. It's 7:10, what time do I have to go to school?"

"Honey, it's Sunday night. It's 7:10 PM. You are going to school tomorrow, on Monday. I think you fell asleep, but it's not morning, that was just a nap."

"I did not fall asleep,"he said. He looked around the house, looked at the clocks, searching for a tell tale AM or PM indicator. Looked outside at the daylight. Looked at me and say that I was wearing the very same clothes from "yesterday," and still he insisted it was Monday morning.

Took me ten minutes to convince him otherwise.

I think I know what it was. It was the clothes. It would be very hard for anyone to get their bearings on what day/month/year it is by looking at me. That's because I wear a uniform. It's called black lycra sweat pants, a jog bra, and one of about three Nike sport shirts. Usually a black fleece jacket is involved. So "usually" that STM calls it "the"jacket, as in, "Oh, I see you're wearing the jacket."

The other day I came out from getting dressed and said to STM, "Are you as tired of my clothes as I am?"

"Yes," he said with nary a pause. "I'm tired of 48% of them."

Well, I am not about to replace 48% of my clothes, way too lazy/cheap/practical to do that, but I am going to go way out on a limb and buy myself one nice pair of jeans that actually fit. I brought in my friend, Nancy, the perfect person for the job. She cleared her calendar and is picking me up in a couple of hours. (Think she's tired of 48% of my clothes, too.)

I think they'll look great with the jacket.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Worth Repeating

Rojo's Resource Room teacher is married to a man named Steve. Rojo loves Steve. Steve, I do believe, loves Rojo. I also believe they've met on rare occasion - let's just say, twice. Possible three times. Four would be a stretch.

Rojo sends Steve e-mails from his computer. Rojo begs his teacher to have Steve come in on his days off. Rojo hounded me all weekend until we bought Steve a birthday card (blank card with the American flag on it) and a balloon (Spongebob). "Mom, Steve's birthday is May 3rd, don't forget."

I knew all that. What I didn't know is that Rojo apparently has a super special just-for-Steve closing line, "I love you and I love you so much." All of his e-mails to Steve end in that fashion (don't even worry about the fact that I gave birth to him and have sacrificed my entire life for that boy and never once has he said this to me).

Rojo's teacher said that she and Steve have made that their thing now when saying I love you to each other. "I love you, and I love you so much." Pretty soon they'll be adding, "Don't forget" to it, if I know Rojo.

And I do.

And I love him, and I love him so much.

* Photo from

Thursday, May 5, 2011

No Accidents

Felt the need all week to keep this day clear - not to schedule anything, just to stay home and go through all the piles on, near and around my desk. Let's just say there might be mail from April 21st that I have yet to open.

Went for a walk with Kathleen and Flicka early, then came home and just had all kinds of trouble settling into anything, flitted and floated ineffectively from one task to the other, all the while with a sense of unease. Something is about to happen. 

Phone rang. Rojo's school. Rojo's school never calls me. Uh oh, I thought. The secretary said Rojo had cut himself with scissors, and they couldn't get the bleeding to stop. "I'll be right up," I said, sending up a prayer of thanks that I was home (albeit unshowered) and able to get there so quickly, when there are days on end that that just never would have happened).

"I think he needs a stitch," the secretary said.

"I'll take him up to Zoom Care" I said, thinking it was the kind of place you just dropped in on, sort of like an emergency room, without the emergency. Plus, they just built one really close to my house. And, because there are no accidents, one of the women from my support group just happened to be walking by the office and heard me say that.

"Oh, you can't just go up there, you have to make an appointment, but you can do that online. Do you have a Smart Phone?"

"No," I answered, not bothering to explain that I am pleased I even have a phone that has a full keyboard for texting, because I didn't have that until this fall.

"Want to borrow mine?" she asked, handing me her iPhone.

"No, I want you to do it," I said, truthfully, knowing nothing about iPhones and being way too rattled to learn in that instant. So, of course that's just what she did - got me all situated right then and right there.

Turns out you need to cancel the appointment with at least an hour warning, or be charged $99. Although the bleeding hadn't stopped at 9:30, our 1:30 appointment seemed like a reasonable time to have this issue self-fix, so I made the appointment and then agreed to meet Jenn, Rojo and the secretary back at school right before lunch to see what was what.

We pulled back the Scooby Doo Band-aid and indeed, the blood had stopped. Cleaned up the wound and put on some Neosporin, put on a fresh Scooby Doo and away I went to cancel the appointment,
grateful for no accidents, self-fixing injuries, and angels, angels, everywhere.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Number one thing on my list to do today is write thank you notes. It will take me the better part of the day. If I really took my time and did a nice job (never going to happen), it could take me the better part of two days. That's how many people showered us with thoughtful gifts to congratulate us, to welcome us, and to celebrate with us. We have a variety of beautiful crosses - think I'm going to dedicate a wall and hang them all on it, it will be gorgeous. We have a wide range of books I can't wait to dive into. We have a daphne plant that will bloom next spring as we celebrate our anniversary. We have candles. We have bouquets. We have Easter baskets. We have cards, cards and more cards that I will cherish (and you know, keep in my basement in a properly marked plastic tote for all eternity).

Today I will light one of the holy candles, light a Mary or two, put on sacred music and write words of gratitude.

What a great day it will be.

* Photo from

Monday, May 2, 2011


Someone in our house turns seventeen today. Someone who doesn't get a lot of blog space. Someone that has gone to her high school for three years, and is known as Rojos' sister - despite the fact that he doesn't even go there - yet - just wait until next year! Someone that made both parents, parents. Someone that made both sets of grandparents, grandparents.  Someone that is a bright spot in the lives of, I'm just going to go ahead and say it, everyone. Someone whose report card has always said, "A pleasure to have in class." Someone that is a good student, a good citizen, a good friend, a good sibling, and a good daughter. Someone that is just good, good to the bone. Solid good. Good, good and more good. Someone I love very much, and of whom I am exceedingly proud.

Happy birthday, Woohoo!

Sorry Not Sorry

I'm sorry I keep pointing you towards BrenĂ© Brown's podcast,  Unlocking Us , but I'm not that  sorry.* I've appreciated ever...