Monday, July 29, 2013

Dentist Appointment

Joseph and Kiana both had dentist appointments this morning. Both needed teeth filled, a first for them. I was a little worried but they did ok. Kiana flinched when she got her novacain and gagged over the suction thing. The dentist gave Joseph twice the amount of novacain and he still cried. Dentist said there was no way he should have been able to feel anything. They left with their prizes and big smiles. Both of them need to go back, neither of them know it. I expect a bit of a battle when it is time to get the rest of the work done. Oh, I can't forget! Kiana lost a tooth! The hygienist pulled it for her. I wasn't even aware it was loose until this morning. The count is now 1 for Joseph and 1 for Kiana. They have quite the competition going.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Cards For Braden

As of 5:00 am Miss Luna is back in her pack n play. I heard her call and must have dozed off because the next thing I knew something was bumping the foot of our bed, I looked down to see a black head. Her hair hangs over her eyes when it is open making her look like a little monkey. I told her to go back to bed and she promptly left to go wake Joseph. I don't think she is quite ready for a "big bed." Oh well, she is my baby!

   We haven't been doing much this week end. Much going away that is. Other than church this morning our time has been spent at home. This afternoon I had the children make cards to send along in a package we are mailing to Braden. Miss Sharon thought some pictures might help him to get motivated to make some changes in his life. Joseph had a meltdown while making his card. He was so excited to make one but it brought out lots of big feelings he didn't know how to deal with. We had another talk and he agreed that Braden is where he needs to be. Now we need to find a way to help Joseph overcome the mad n sad that comes up when he thinks about Braden. I am at a loss as to know how to help him work through this. Thus far he has always seemed to feel better after our talk but I can't help but feel we are only putting a bandage on a deep wound.

                                                 Working on cards for their brother

Joseph felt much better after we talked through his feelings

...Off to roast marshmallows!!!

Friday, July 26, 2013

A Battle Won

Joseph has been really struggling since Braden left. He has always had a difficult time when he thinks about his bio family. Usually a talk or looking at pictures gave him the boost he needed to work through things. I spoke with Sharon about Joseph as we are reaching out for any advice we can get. I will add that we appreciate advice from folks who have already walked this road! :) Anyway, Sharon suggested asking him what he is afraid of i.e. being sent away or Braden never coming home. This morning I got the perfect opportunity. He threw a typical Joseph fit, the anger & pain I saw in his eyes told me we had another long chat coming up. :) After he calmed down I asked him if there is anything he is afraid of. He thought for a while then said, "I am afraid a tree will fall down." Sigh! He obviously didn't intend to make this easy for me. When dealing with a child you need to be really careful you don't place ideas in their head. Braden and Joseph have already used our subtle (we thought) questioning and made up a story that wasn't true. Lesson learned! Back to Joseph, he was also afraid of an ant crawling on his foot and some other inconsequential things. I fianlly said, "When you think of Braden being at Miss Sharon, does it make you feel afraid/" He finally admitted that he worries we will take him there if he is naughty. I then asked if we took Braden to Miss Sharon because he was naughty. Joseph thought about that for awhile then said Braden went there because he made alot of bad choices. I asked Joseph if he knew mom sometimes makes bad choices... I gave him an example :(... he looked rather dumbfounded! I said everyone makes bad choices sometimes but sometimes people are hurting so badly inside they don't even want to make good choices. Miss Sharon is a lady who helps boys and girls want to make good choices. I told him he wants to make good choices and that makes all the difference. When I gave him a hug after our talk he leaned into me and gave me a huge hug in return along with a big "Joseph Smile!" He has been a happy boy ever since. I know the war is not nearly won but I think we won this battle.

In other news.... Dean finished the girls bunk beds! Kiana ordered a purple bed and was disappointed the  mattress wasn't purple as well. We rearranged furniture and assembled the bed last night. Luna was so excited she bounced around here all evening. I left her run cause I was a little, well maybe a lot worried about bedtime. She used to sleep in a pack n play and couldn't climb out. Her new bed has a rail to prevent her from falling out but she climbs right over it. It took over an hour till she finally fell asleep. We tried all the tricks to no avail. Thankfully all the running had worn her out and eventually her eyes would no longer stay open. She slept all night but was up bright and early this morning! I was having my devotions when I heard the pitter patter of little feet, sure enough here comes Luna! Her eyes were sparkling and she informed me, "daddy, new bed!"
 If you come to our house any time in the near future be prepared to be pulled back to the bedroom to see the bunk beds!

A Little R & R

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sweet Corn

Last year I had surgery over sweet corn season. My mom saw an ad in the paper... there was an Amish lady who would put up your sweet corn for you. $4 a quart sounded like alot until I began adding up the supplies... sweet corn, bags and TIME. Not to mention I do not enjoy doing corn. I was a little apprehensive because my family is a bit picky about their corn. We don't like it old or creamed. Guess what? It was delicious! Come 2013 and it is corn time again.... do I pay the $4.50 a quart or do it myself? I felt guilty buying it all so I only ordered 15 quarts. I went to pick it up this afternoon. Was so nice to stop in, pick up my freshly cut and bagged corn and leave! Yes, I am lazy.

Dean and Tristan weren't home for supper as Dean is powder coating the girls bunk bed tonite. Luna was not impressed with the corn! She put it to her mouth then said, "I no wan' it!" She filled up on mac n cheese instead because the ham roast I had put in the crock pot wasn't soft

I can't post pictures of Luna but here is a picture of her plate of mac n cheese and the despised ear of corn. She ate two servings of  pasta. She would live on noodles if we would let her!

Kiana and Joseph loved the corn! I remember my grandma Nolt telling me that as a girl she and her 11 siblings would all eat at least a dozen ears each for dinner. Corn was all that was all they had for dinner. My brothers, sisters and I used to eat around 6-7 ears apiece. When I first made corn on the cob for Dean he only ate 1 or 2 ears. I didn't think that was much at all but now several years later, I usually make that many for myself. 

Kiana and Joseph went along to pick up the corn this afternoon. They were amazed with the Amish farms. Joseph said they look like the farms in Old Yeller! The boys even dress like Arliss and Travis in the story!!!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


This morning the children and I met  friends at Shoeneck park. We walked, watched the children play on the small jungle gym all the while gazing longingly at the huge set that was behind a construction fence, talked and then enjoyed sticky buns along with iced coffee for the moms and chocolate milk for the children. It rained last night and the ball diamond was a wet sandy mess. The children had a blast making "chocolate" in the mud. My plan was to go to Costco afterward but one look at those muddy children and I decided it would be best to go home and change first. It was nearing lunch time but Costco usually has all kinds of food you can sample. I was hoping the samples would hold them over till we got home again. We got to Costco only to see handmade signs sticking to the windows saying they were closed today due to a power failure! I decided I may as well go do some other shopping in the area so I went to an outgrown shop, Goodwill and Target. By then Luna was loudly protesting so we made a pit stop at Sonic for burgers and ice cream. I didn't really want to stop for food because just last night we stopped for pizza on the way home from family therapy. Eating out is expensive and fattening!

                                                              Supper at Pizza Palace

Tristan and Kiana trying to eat/hold hot onion rings. They couldn't wait to dig in!

Miss Sharon had a positive update for me yesterday. Last week Braden had 4 good days in a row before regressing again. 4 good days is a huge improvement. Whether the good days were actually "good days" or just  another form of manipulation remains to be seen.

Grumpy Miss Luna is working on the last of her two year molars. Her main word is, "No!" Last night she was awake several times hopefully tonight will go better. Nothing pleases her. She must feel miserable.

Saturday, July 20, 2013


The dreaded doctor visit is now history and I wouldn't have had to worry. Neither child shed a tear! I had Kiana go first beings she is a drama queen so anything was possible. She got her shots and hopped down from the table like it was no big deal. Joseph probably would have cried but if Kiana didn't, neither would he! I stopped at McDonalds and bought then each a chocolate shake. Joseph finished his before we got home. Kiana didn't want all of hers so Joseph offered to take care of it for her. I told him he shall let Luna and Tristan have it. He weighed 53 pounds and Kiana was only 39, so I think one shake was enough!

On Thursday my friend Julia and I took our children to Hershey Chocolate World. One bit of advice, don't go there during summer vacation there were people everywhere. We were able to walk right onto the train which was very nice. Luna barely moved the whole time! She still talks about the candy bar she got at the end of the ride. In the evening we went to my sister Shari and made soft pretzels. Last night we attended Berean Meetings at United Zion Campground. I was so tired till the service was over. Has been a long time since I was that weary, guess my adrenal fatigue still likes to pop up and let me know I have to be careful. Tonight is PaulB's work picnic. The children are so excited because they have a candy scramble. One would think they seldom get candy.

I bought a watermelon the other evening. We ate it for a bedtime snack. I took my cutting board and knife out to the shop so the slop stayed outside. Afterward we put off the sparklers we bought in Chincoteague.
I am determined to make lots of memories in the few remaining weeks of summer vacation.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Phone Call

Our phone call with Braden went ok. He told us that he put a puzzle together and brushed the horses with a big brush. When we asked him a question he would begin talking about another unrelated topic, which is typical for a child who needs to be in control. He did ask if we had fun in Chincoteague. Miss Sharon asked him how that makes him feel and he said, "good." She asked if he feels anything else and he said,"Sad." Poor boy! After our conversation I spoke to Miss Sharon for a bit. She did say Monday was one of his better days but overall he is hanging tight to his control issues. 

On Monday I had Joseph at the dentist. The dentist found several cavities and said Joseph needs to brush better. I felt bad cause he brushes his own teeth and I am usually to distracted to check them after ward. Both Kiana and Joseph have appointments to get work done on Monday. The secretary suggested I bring both at once and it sounded like a good idea at the time. Now I am beginning to wonder. Today they both go for their pre K physicals and immunizations. Dean thought I should take someone along for back up in case they both flip out over the shots. I am hoping that with the usual milk shake bribe they will do ok. 

Dean gave our hairy dogs hair cuts. They look rather funny but hopefully they will be cooler now. He also fixed the chicken coop so we no longer have chickens wandering around the yard and looking in the patio doors. Slowly but surely things are being taken off his to do list.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


Tomorrow we are scheduled to have our first contact with Braden. We haven't spoken to him since he was placed at TAP which was almost five weeks ago. My stomach is churning a bit just thinking about it. We have not had to live therapeutically since he is no longer at home and in all honesty, it has been wonderful to be normal! This phone call feels like we are walking right back into the fire. I know it is only a phone call but I also think I have a touch of PTSD. Any mention of contact sends my body into an emotional tailspin. The flip side is that I have high hopes that things will have improved and we will be able to connect. However I know that isn't likely as Miss Sharon is not reporting any changes for the better.

When we arrived home from Chincoteague there was a package setting on our porch. A church family blessed us with these adorable cake pops and a card letting us know they care. I felt so blessed!

They were almost to cute to eat! 

Saturday, July 13, 2013


After a week of relaxing, going out to eat, sitting on the beach and biking it is time to get back into the saddle. We had a wonderful time but it is so very nice to be home again! We rented a house for the week but came home a day early due to rain being forecast for the next several days.

We went out to the beach after we got down on Saturday evening. The water was COLD! 

This picture isn't very clear but if you look closely you can see a fawn. It was calmly eating alongside the bike trail. Luna's eyes about popped when she saw it! The little guy helped dry Kiana's tears. She had just begun to bike again after she wrecked her bike. 

Looking at all the animals inside the water tank at the visitor center. There was a huge horseshoe crab you could hold. The children were not about to touch it!

Tristan trying to figure out what kind of animal this bone belonged to.

We rented this golf cart on Monday. Was fun to cruise around the island. We drove to some gift shops and went out for ice cream before returning it and heading for the beach.

Kiana jumped on this "thing." She loved it! Dean tried to persuade her to do flips but she was a little to scared to try it though.

Kiana loved it! 

a grumpy looking turtle we saw crossing the road

Tuesday morning we got up early to watch the sunrise. It was freezing out on the beach! I took bagels along out for our breakfast after eating and flying our kite the cold, grumpy Zimmerman family went back to the house and napped. Well, Dean and the boys slept. The girls were not about to nap in the middle of the morning so around mid morning I took them shopping.

Thursday evening we watched a small pony show. 

This little guy was only ten days old. He/she/it was adorable! I am not a horse fan but would have loved to take this little fellow along home with us.

Now it is back to work....weeding the garden, laundry, cleaning, cooking but after my week away I am ready to dig in, sorta!

Friday, July 5, 2013

An Uneventful Week

Not much has been happening around here. At least nothing note worthy! The week has been spent packing and working ahead so we can enjoy being lazy next week. We plan to leave for Chincoteague tomorrow around lunch time. If all goes as planned we will eat lunch then everyone will sleep while we drive. I bought a new Odyssey CD and have a bunch of snacks and books for the children to look at if they get bored. We rented a house for the week and have quite a list of things we would like to do including kicking back and relaxing.

Tristan lost his pet cat, Socks. We do not have very good success with cats. On Monday Socks rode to work under Deans truck. Thankfully Dean saw it and rescued her before she ran off. This morning Socks has once more gone missing. Tristan is going around to all the neighbors asking if they have seen her. I asked him if he prayed that he would find her and he gave me the "Duh, mom" look and said, "Of course I did!"

I talked with Miss Sharon and we plan to talk to Braden sometime after we come home from Chincoteague. Miss Laura his therapist, didn't think not having any contact was a good idea. Laura, Sharon and I emailed one another and decided to do a phone call. Sharon said Braden is one tough little boy, he is hanging on to his control with all he has. She is having trouble getting him to want to change because he is just as happy sitting on the side lines and watching as he is when joining in. Usually a child decides to give up the control issues in order to be able to participate in the activities going on around him. Braden acts as though he doesn't care. I am so thankful someone else is responsible for his training for awhile.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Family Time

We enjoyed a very relaxing family centered week end. On Saturday the girls and I went to some local yard sales. Kiana was thrilled to find a sparkly wallet! She had been begging for a wallet for quite some time already. Her next request was for money to put inside it. I told her I will give her some when we go to yard sales again as I didn't want her keeping change in it for fear Luna would find it and choke. Saturday evening we worked outside then went to Boehringers for burgers and ice cream. Luna ate only a few spoon fulls of ice cream before claiming the cup of root beer which she ended up draining!
   Sunday we had a fellowship meal after church then Dean, Luna and I all took long naps. The other three were supposed to sleep. I guess you could say they rested but there wasn't any sleeping involved. We then spent some time in the pool with the children. Luna is finally getting over her fear of the water. We tried putting her in the pool soon after we filled it. The water was cold and she was not at all impressed! After supper we went kayaking at the Project. Dean and Tristan each had a kayak and Kiana and Joseph took turns riding with Dean. They saw two eagles out at one end of the "lake". Tristan really wanted to me to go out to see them. I hesitated at first but am really glad I tried kayaking. It was fun and Tristan was so proud to be able to show mom around!

Miss Kiana enjoying a snack after her kayak ride

Tristan and I returning from our ride

The lake was beautiful with the clouds reflecting on the water.

I got some really cute pictures of Luna fishing in the water puddles. She kept saying, "Watch, watch, Fish!"
Please continue praying for us and our family. For safety, as we are being closely watched by the county just to be sure we are caring for our children properly and for peace of mind as well. My mind wants to wander to all the what ifs but there is no peace there. Our God is able to do exceedingly abundantly more than we can ask or even think to ask!