Monday, October 22, 2012

Monday, Monday...

Welcome, Monday! It's good to see you!

It's been such a long weekend. We all have been battling colds, illness and miscellaneous other ailments. My husband was bitten by the stomach bug Saturday, so we have basically laid low, with lots of Jello, saltines, Gatorade, disinfectant and prayers. He spent the weekend in our basement family room/playroom, where he holes up when having to do work anyway. Luckily it struck him down there, so he kept his germs down there while life went on (mostly) as usual for us upstairs. We are lucky to have a full bathroom in our basement as well as a futon and a big TV. It often becomes his quarantined sick quarters when he is ill, and no one bothers him AND he doesn't infect the rest of the house.

With all the illness floating around, it has reminded me that (a) we need our flu shots; and (b) we need to restock our sick supplies. Two quick runs to the store this week cost me $60 that I wasn't expected to spend this week, on things like extra cleaning supplies, Pedialyte for the twins and Gatorade for my husband (out of both!) as well as normal sick things that seemed to be missing from our house: Jello, saltines, white bread, ginger ale, etc. I was reminded that whenever there is a good deal on these I need to squirrel some away for the next bout of icky sickness. We also could use an extra bottle or two of Nyquil in our medicine cabinet, some cough drops, and Kleenex. We are running low now!

Last week, I mentioned heading over to a very special link that would put life in perspective: Ty Louis Campbell was a beautiful, sweet, five-year-old boy who succumbed to brain cancer last week. I did not personally know him, but this little boy has so touched my heart. Maybe it's because I have a little boy now and I can totally relate to his mother's blog, as she shares her heart on her sleeve regarding his struggle and the accompanying treatment during the past two years. She shared both little joys and major disappointments, and beautiful pictures of his "smile of the day." I do not believe this little angel's life was in vain, as I read the countless comments on Facebook or on the blog from strangers who are as touched as I am. Ty's parents are trying to spread the word, and raise money, for pediatric cancer research, which is sorely underfunded.

Photo: Thank you, Chris Evans.  The REAL Captain America!  We wish you could have shaken his hand, too.  It was so special to our entire family to know that you heard about Ty and were compelled enough to post about him.  Thank you so much!
And through Ty's mother's blog, she also has always encouraged families to appreciate their children, relish every moment instead of worrying about the silly things moms worry about daily. Instead of always worrying about the mess in your house, spend a day making a mess and enjoy it. Or, as her famous advice goes, let your child jump in muddy puddles. The other day, when it was raining, I actually told my little boy to jump in a puddle. I brought him over and stomped him right through it. And he laughed and laughed. He thought that was the best thing in the whole wide world. Since I have been reading this blog, I am trying to appreciate the little things, or crazy dance in the living room, or give them candy treats, and just sit and play with my kids. Sometimes it takes a tragedy to point out how lucky we all are. We don't have to be wealthy or privileged to enjoy our children, do we? Or appreciate their gift of health -- which is a great, great gift.

In the spirit of honoring this very special little boy, and countless others like him, I'd like to encourage every one to think about supporting pediatric cancer in any small way this holiday season: Spread the word through your blogs, donate to St. Jude's through the campaigns in your local stores, or even send in a small donation to a childhood cancer charity, like the Ty's foundation at (You can also follow information about Ty's foundation via Facebook at the Ty Louis Campbell community page or on Twitter @SuperTyCampbell.) Also, St. Jude will be kicking off their annual Thanks and Giving campaign on Nov. 1, with special items you can purchase to raise money for their ongoing research. It would likely be a lovely way to shop for the holidays. Or download the Taylor Swift song "Ronan," written about Rockstar Ronan, whose mom has a blog as well and wrote a post about corresponding with Ty's mom here.

If we all use our voices, perhaps we can find a way to help more children -- did you know that there really hasn't been major inroads in treating childhood cancer in 30 years? That we often go by adult protocols for treatment? These poor children need our help. I know there are so many charities from which to choose, but perhaps just a little bit of attention can help less children suffer.

Now for some great, good news! Let's all send some love out to the West Coast because the talented Alicia of Posie Gets Cozy and her husband have adopted a beautiful little girl. This is such a gigantic blessing. Last year, Alicia and her husband were on the road to an adoption which ended in devastating heartbreak. Reading her new post with photos of a brand-new baby, fills my heart with joy. I read her blog regularly to see all her beautiful creations, and I feel as if I know her. I have been pulling for her to find a new little angel, and she has. And I can't wait to see all the lovely things she will create for this little sweetheart.

So, that's a lot to say for a Monday, right? But it's all on my mind. Today, continuing to get my own life in order is on the menu. We had such a busy week last week, with much happiness shining through our sniffly noses and sore throats. Big Girl had her Student Council election on Friday, so she needed to prepare posters and a speech; she came in second in her class for representative. She was happy with this result, since she is the alternate for the winner. Frankly, the entire process is always a bit of an annoyance for me, since it's really just an overblown popularity contest. But that's for another post on another day.

But the much bigger news is that she was named Musician of the Month at her school -- the first-ever Musician of the Month! We have a new principal this year, and this is a new award, and it is so sweet that her music teacher chose her for this honor. The school had a "town meeting" on Friday for several character awards and other announcements. Her music teacher, who is at another school on Fridays, could not be there to announce the award, so he taped a special video to say why she deserved it. It was so nice, with such wonderful things said about her not only as a student but as a person. (Yes, I cried!) And he didn't announce her name until the end, so it was such a nice surprise for her. I am so proud of her and her accomplishments. I know what a good girl she is and it is so nice for others to notice too.

I'm actually writing this on Sunday night, and I need to sign off to get ready for dinner, make a meal plan for the week, and start night-before-school preparations. I like to have lunch boxes stocked with snacks, clothes decisions made, and the backpack ready. I'm not a great morning person so these little steps just make life easier -- especially on Mondays!

Have a great Monday, and enjoy your life's rainbows!

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