May 26, 2009

Great Strides 2009!

We had a great time! Click the arrow to begin the slide show and click "full screen" at the bottom to see the photos the best!
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May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

As a Navy wife, I am thanked repeatedly for my husband's service. Friends and strangers both are loving and honoring. I am still surprised how Dan will be stopped in the middle of the grocery store and thanked if he is in uniform.

On Memorial Day, I am easily reminded that what I go through is not anything near like those who we honor today. They didn't just serve...they sacrificed. And their wives didn't just lose sleep and sanity and social events, they lost their loved ones...permanently.

Last night, Timothy asked "how do we celebrate Memorial Day?" (knowing each holiday has it's own traditions). I said, "We take time to think about the military who died so we can live freely in the United States of America". He said, "They died?" Yes, and since we are the beneficiaries of their sacrifice, we honor them today.

Image found on Flickr.

May 16, 2009

Great Strides is TODAY!

Our ticker says we are at $5240.00 in our fundraising because that is what has actually hit the CF account. However, I am VERY PLEASED to announced, with the money already received that is making it's way through the channels we are actually at:
I know I'm a broken record, but it's only because I believe it. This money WILL go straight to finding a cure or funding a medicine that will improve Samantha's quality of life. The foundation doesn't mess around with these dollars-they put them to good use, and this mom is so thankful!

I wish Dan were here this morning. Of course I always wish he were home, but if I could pick 1 day of the whole deployment to have him here it would be today. He loves Great Strides, loves fundraising, and most importantly loves his Baby Girl. [The other day we bought chocolate chip cookies at McDonalds (3 for $1). Samantha said, "How about a cookie for my daddy?" Not much longer, baby girl.]

Back to Dan. So he is really the amazing fundraiser who has learned how to build a "Team" and has several fellow sailors who have raised money for us 2 years in a row. Read Dan's post to hear a message from "Team Sam-Deployed Edition"! Thank you, USS Antietam!

May 14, 2009

Karate: Palgwe 1

Timothy needs to know this within a few weeks, so I'm putting it on my blog for easy access. Hopefully, in a couple of months I'll upload a video of Timothy doing it!

May 11, 2009

Mother's Day 2009

Mother's Day was low key (just how I like things). Timothy's teacher had the kids make the most amazing mother book (she never stops), and it even had seeds in the back for us to plant together! Timothy & Samantha received this loving email from their Daddy:
Hi kids! It's Daddy!

Today is a special day for mommy. Did you know that today is Mother's Day? That means it's a day to celebrate what a great mommy you have! So please tell mommy you love her today! Say, "I love you mommy!"

I love you both.
Yesterday I contemplated my children and treasured them in my heart...

Timothy-Everywhere we go, he takes his hands and crashes them together in different ways. Most people probably think he's crashing cars or trucks. But I know that he is imagining Super Smash Brothers Brawl. In this game, there are "stages", and they have levels (imagine a 3 story house). Two characters battle. When they hit each other, they knock each other off the stage or sometimes a character jumps high in the sky to avoid dying.


I die when I think about the germs, and I spend a lot of time, telling Timothy not to touch or "You can't do Super Smash in here!". But yesterday when we were on the canned food aisle and canned corn became the most recent stage (with varying heights-it was ideal), I just couldn't help but smile at the fact that this is my son. Something inside of him continually imagines these battles and choreographs them! I'm his mom, so I get that.

Samantha-this is my outdoors girl. I grew up in the suburbs, and really my idea of being outside is walking down the street. Not Samantha. She wants to be IN the dirt, IN the sand, picking flowers, climbing hills. Nothing is too messy for her (unless it's spilled liquid-then cover your ears!)

God is good like that knowing I need tons more outdoor time than I get, and love for my child is the best means of getting me to do something unnatural. So, this weekend we went on a short hike on the Tecolote Canyon. This is a giant canyon here in San Diego, and has tons of trails. It was simple enough that Samantha could walk it herself, and even Timothy & I enjoyed it!

Quotes from the hike:

Timothy-I've never seen a cactus THAT close before.
Samantha (crying)-I want to walk MORE!

We could have walked for hours, and she still would have cried when it was time to stop because she loves being outdoors. I get that and love it about her. I'm her mom.

May 8, 2009

Military Spouse Appreciation Day

Thanks to another $100 donation this morning we are only $200 away from our goal!!!! I'm so excited!!

May 8th is Military Spouse Appreciation Day. I guess this post is a kind of like patting myself on the back, but if you only knew some of the women I am friends with...
  • Amber, who has a 4 yr old, is pregnant, and who's husband is deployed on a sub
  • Shelley & Susan, who's Navy husbands just finished serving a year in Iraq
  • Tabatha, my cousin's wife who dutifully serves at home while Chris is sent to Iraq (and God only knows where else) yearly
  • Candace, who's husband is technically on shore duty, but was just flown to Asia for 2 weeks
That's just a handful. These are beautiful, amazing women, who do it day in and day out. I honor them today. You must go to Faith at the Front and read Sara Horn's poem entitled A Day for You, Military Spouse. It's well written by someone who obviously knows.

May 6, 2009

WW & SEW: Great Strides 2009

Courtney at Tale of Olivia's 65 Roses has this beautiful question written above a picture of Olivia: Aren't I Worth a Cure??? Yes, Olivia, you are definitely worth a cure!!! Each of our precious children are.

For anyone possibly new to my blog, the picture above is my daughter, Samantha, who was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis at 2 weeks of age. You can read a CF Fact Sheet here, and you can read how CF got the nickname of "65 Roses" here. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation online by clicking on the "Donate Now" button in the top right corner of my blog.

May 5, 2009

Great Strides 2009!!

donate to my cause
With less than 2 weeks to go, we are in the home stretch of fundraising!!! With just a few more donations we can meet our goal! If you have not had a chance to donate yet, please do it now! Just click the "Donate Now" button above. What can motivate you to donate? Mother's Day present for me? Dan deployed? Any amount is great and greatly appreciated!

Walkers!!! For any of you in San Diego who want to come out for the Great Strides walking party event, mark your calendar for May 16th at 8am!! It is truly a celebration of life! It's easy enough for kids, and whoever wants to run it is welcome to do that as well! More detailed information about walking with Team Sam in the days to come!

May 4, 2009

Day in the Life of this Mom...

Due to some random events all falling on the same day, my schedule looked a bit out of the ordinary today:

6:20am-opened up blinds and doors in both kids' rooms in an attempt to wake them early
6:40am-woke Sam up, fairly easily with a Cheerios bribe (her new love)
6:50am-woke Timothy up, not easily, but he was in a good mood.
7:10am-drove Sam to her first day of preschool (3 mornings a week the month of May)
7:30am-dropped Sam off
7:50am-chatted with a friend down the street as she was headed TO the preschool
8:15am-friend dropped her infant baby off with me because she had an appt. and had the pleasure of hearing Timothy say cute things like:
  • Zero yr old
  • tickle tickle
  • Say ahhhhhh (trying to the Isabella to take her pacifier)
  • Her name is Cinderella?
  • Why does she sit backwards?
8:40am-dropped Timothy off at school. T walked to his class from the gate all by himself for the 1st time today. I stayed on the street and waved through the playground fence since Bella had fallen asleep.
9:30am-met 2 friends at the playground. One of them watches another infant and her kids were at preschool with Samantha, so we got a kick out of having strollers there today instead of our big kids!
10:45am-left playground to go get Samantha from preschool
11:00am-mom of Bella called to say they were done, and we coordinated drop off! Bella could not have been more fun or more enjoyable! She is beautiful!
11:30am-picked up Samantha-she LOVED her first day!
11:50am-ate lunch with Samantha at Taco Bell to kill some time.
12:15pm-went to Timothy's school for his lunchtime. Their class raised the most money in "Pennies for Pasta", and they were rewarded with Olive Garden today. I helped serve (and no, I didn't eat a second lunch!) Then the kids got extra recess time, so we had a great time afterwards too!
2:00pm-came home and put Samantha down (she totally crashed!)
2:30pm-writing this blog post!
3:15pm-Samantha and I go back to school to get Timothy!!!!!!

Lots of driving, but it was such a fun day! Tonight we are going to do homework and chill out!

May 1, 2009

Respite Care (4 of 4)

In Feb I started receiving 40 hours of free respite care each month from the San Diego YMCA Childcare Resource Services. This has been THE biggest blessing of this deployment. My provider comes to my home so now I don't have to cancel plans when Samantha gets sick or worry about her getting sick from other kids. Besides the 12-hour virus she got last week, these 3 months has been her healthiest span by far. So if you fall into any of these categories below, please read on...

San Diego County resident AND Military EFMP Category 4 or 5:
If you are in the Navy you may not have heard about this because it just began in January (not new to other branches). The Navy hadn't funded it because they didn't think enough families would participate, so this a pilot program. The YMCA has a year to get 50 Navy families actively utilizing this. Needless to say, I want anyone who can to join so that I can continue to receive services after this year! If you fall in this category email me at:, and I will give you the incredible details and contact information. This program is almost too good to be true, but it IS true.

San Diego County resident & child with special needs.
The YMCA does have a civilian side, so this is not just for military families! I don't know the details, but I can still point you to who you need to talk to. It is some how connected with Regional Center.

Live in San San Diego, love kids, and are looking for a job.
The providers we get have 3 levels of experience: High school graduate, college graduate, and nursing degree. There is a base pay for each level, and then the provider gets $5 more an hour for each sibling. And they pay mileage.

Outside San Diego
I realize if you can't use this, you really don't want to hear about it, but I just want to encourage you that a program may exist in your area as well. If you have a special needs child, you are receiving some kind of service. Start asking around (doctors, nurses, school nurses, social workers, counselors, teachers, therapists). They may know of these programs because they have other clients/patients who are using these! Call your local regional center or state department of human services. And don't hesitate to check forums. If there is a resource in your city, it is very likely mentioned there.

If this post could help one family receive respite care, it would be worth it to me! I'm feeling very positive after listing the things this week that I must remember to be thankful for!