Thursday, November 29, 2007

Birthday Meme

C.S. Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, and Madeleine L'Engle were all born on this day. Magistramater is doing a meme that you might find fun to answer. Since I'm reading a Madeleine L'Engle book right now, I thought I'd share a few quotes from it.

from The Crosswicks Journals, Book 1, A Circle of Quiet

  • Cooking is the only part of housekeeping I manage with any grace; it's something like writing a book: you look in the refrigerator and see what's there, choose all the ingredients you need, and a few your husband thinks you don't need, and put them all together to concoct a dish. Vacuum cleaners are simply something more for me to trip over; and a kitchen floor, no matter how grubby, looks better before I wax it. The sight of a meal's worth of dirty dishes, pots, and pans makes me want to run in the other direction.
  • ...over and over again we hear "like" misused this way: I feel like I'm going to throw up; well, you know, Mother, like I really do need it because...; tell it like it is. Every time, "like" is misused, it is weakened as a simile.
    I'm not against changes in the language. I love new words...I've just discovered "widdershins": against the direction of the sun. In Crosswicks the bath water runs out clockwise; in Australia, widdershins. I love anything that is going to make language richer and stronger. But when words are used in way that is going to weaken the language, it has nothing to do with the beautiful way that they can wriggle and wiggle and develop and enrich our speech, but instead it is impoverishing, diminishing. If our language is watered down, then mankind becomes less human, and less free--
  • So my hope, each day as I grow older, is that this will never be simply chronological aging - which is a nuisance and frequently a bore...but that I will also grow into maturity, where the experience which can be acquired only through chronology will teach me how to be more aware, open, unafraid to be vulnerable, involved, committed, to accept disagreement without feeling threatened (repeat and underline this one) to understand that I cannot take myself seriously until I stop taking myself seriously - to be, in fact, a true adult.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

A Child's Thanksgiving Thanks

I’m thankful for the many things
That help us live as well as kings,
For all the food that makes us drool,
And another holiday from school.

By Karl Fuchs

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Clementine saves the day

No, that's not the title of the new Clementine book that will be coming out in April 2008.

I was having one of those "I feel too awful to even rest" afternoons. My idea of a good rest usually involves curling up on the couch with an afghan over me and escaping inside a good book. Today I found myself in bed, propped up a little with two big pillows, but without the ability to read any of the seven books I had piled beside me. I think there were too many words on the pages. I'd pick one up and read a couple of paragraphs, then set it down.

After several failed attempts at book reading, I tried closing my eyes; but I don't have the gift of napping, especially with a throbbing headache. Then, Erin came in and plopped on the bed with today's mail. (Today she just had two packages from USPS.) She opened them.

One was a galley (pages are loose with a big clip holding them together) of the newest Clementine book. Excitement! Both Erin and I are big fans. We'd been afraid (when the publisher told her they'd send it) that the galley might not have the illustrations yet. Hooray, they were all in there. The books are made complete with the pictures drawn by Marla Frazee.

We both took a peek and then Erin did something she's never done with an advance reader copy before. She handed it to me and said, "Here, you read it." Wow! A couple of times I'd asked to read an ARC before she did, getting a "yeah, you wish" sort of look. This was special. *smile*

Clementine's Letter was "just what the doctor ordered." When I finished it, I realized I'd gotten the rest I'd been seeking, along with some giggles to boot! I haven't read the very first Clementine book (this is the third,) but I've decided to ask for it for Christmas. Guess when I'd save it for?

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Update for B

In my previous post about B, I was too tired to go into what the doc thinks is causing the breathing problems and chest pain. Basically it is a ph problem in his body that causes stress on his kidneys. The ph problem probably stems from the unbalanced bad bacteria in the colon, so there you go...the endless cycle which, I believe, not only caused this whole illness, but continues to keep us from getting better.

The doc gave B a supplement to help support his kidneys, but after taking it a few days, Brady was having stomach problems. When we went back to the doctor on Thursday, he said that B's gut needs some more healing before he can take the supplement. Yeah, so what else is new? It was discouraging to have to get off the supplement, but the doctor says that the NMT treatments can help his gut to start to heal, too.

I've decided we need to try juicing again. We just can't handle raw vegetables, but I've read that when you juice them they are more tolerable then just plain raw. Juicing removes the fiber. The cooked vegetables that we've been eating the last several months just aren't giving us enough nutrients and healing. The first (and only) time we juiced some veggies, the three of us could absolutely not stand it - that was about a year ago. I'll try to find some different recipes that might work and we'll try again. Gotta boost that ph!

In the meantime, he is off the prescription medicine and his breathing has significantly improved and the chest pain has gone away. Unfortunately, his stomach isn't back to normal yet, so he's still suffering in a way that makes his days hard. Thanks for reading. Keep praying!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

No, it's not Christmas

It's just another day in the life of Miss Erin...aka kidlit book reviewer.

Yesterday, our neighbor, Mrs. Y, knocked on our door. I answered it and she asked, "Is Erin there?" Erin hopped off her computer chair and came to the door. "Erin, it's Christmas! A key for the package box was in my mail. When I opened the box the first thing that came to my mind was, 'What in the world did my kids order off the Internet?' " But then she started going through the packages and with relief realized they were all for neighbor, Erin.

The contents consisted of:
  • One bookish t-shirt from an author, just because...
  • 3 books won last month from readergirlz, when Miss E participated in their month long live author chats
  • 1 "First Look" book from Harper Collins
  • Another "First Look" book from Harper Collins
  • 1 newly released book from an author who is serving on Miss E's Cybil's panel
  • 1 book written by an author/friend of grandparents in SD- Hey that one was for me, (on loan.)
About an hour later the doorbell rang again. FedEx with... guess what? This one a 2007 Cybil's nominated book sent from the publisher.

The rest us say we're getting use to it, but it's hard not to be a little envious at times. ; )

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Stuck in Traffic

On an e-mail prayer update today, a friend, who has chronic fatigue, wrote: "What’s it like to have chronic fatigue? It is like your body is a car with the majority of the spark plug wires pulled out and given only a quart of gas to do a road trip with. It chugs along haltingly and stops when the meager supply of gas is used up, waiting for another quart to be put in." She went on to explain that she had felt she was going 15 miles/hour in a 70 mile/hour speed zone for a long time, but recently she has experienced an increase of energy to put her at about 30 mph. Hooray!

Our son, Brady, would describe himself "stuck in traffic on empty." Even though he was chronically fatigued before, in the last six months or so he has become increasingly disabled. When trying to "get out into traffic" he finds himself having chest pains and breathing problems. All that pollution, you know...(little did we know how close to the truth this was until yesterday.)

He's had times when those pains and breathing problems have reached emergency proportions. The first time was the weekend before our trip to SD and IA, in which we took him to the emergency room. Chest x-rays, EKG, and a test for a stomach ulcer all turned out clear. The doctor guessed it was a virus settled in the chest and said it should clear up in a few days. Well, it didn't and thankfully we were able to use our Rife machine and long distance SCIO treatments to help him through rough spots on our trip.

In September, we found a new doctor for him, as the chest pain and breathing problems were still a concern, not escalating quite as badly as in June, usually, but keeping Brady just plain DOWN. His artwork had become too much of an effort for him. Video games and movies became the vehicle to get through the day. In October, after receiving the results of many tests, we still didn't have many answers except his blood was thick and his adrenals were very depressed.

This weekend his chest pain and breathing problems reached emergency "red light status" again. The problem had been building for two weeks, seemingly after getting on new medicine and supplements from the doctor. We called the doctor on Saturday- not much help there, just a recommendation for further lab tests on Monday, with results getting to his office in a couple of days or so. "This kid can't breathe TONIGHT!" I wanted to scream.

We tried treatments on the Rife machine and aspirin for relief. Saturday night he barely slept - slipping in and out of consciousness between hallucinations. That he made it through the night at all was God's grace. Our SCIO gal was out of town and couldn't help us until Sunday night, at which time she hooked him up and ran him through the night. He slept a bit better.

Thankfully, the new doctor that we started up with in late September, had referred us to another doctor 90 miles north of us that we had visited once each of the last two weeks. He had an opening on Monday morning and Brady was able to have an exam and an NMT treatment. This doctor could tell us what was happening - Wow!

Now we know that Brady isn't having a hard time getting oxygen (what the other doctors assumed as their starting point,) he is having a hard time getting rid of carbon dioxide. Bingo! Could this be why his brain keeps getting more and more clouded? His body has been poisoning itself for six months. (And yeah, the doctor also thinks he knows why, but that's a different post.)

Today he is quite a bit better. He's still not breathing normally, but the chest pain has gone away. The SCIO gal gave him a full treatment after his NMT treatment in the morning, yesterday, and let the machine run on him all through last night again. Also, we have decided to get him off a prescription medicine he started taking two weeks ago for his adrenals to see if that helps. We have to slowly wean him off that even though it's only been two weeks of treatment.

What is a SCIO or Rife machine you ask? Or NMT (neuromodulation) treatments? They both have to do with a Quantum Physics approach to studying our bodies (versus a chemical approach.) No, I don't have the vocabulary right now to be able to describe it to you intelligently. But yes, I believe these treatments have been instruments used by God in granting our son life protection. Thanks be to God!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Autumn was a strange paradoxical time of year. It was the season when he was the happiest and yet it was the season when he was most vulnerable and most aware, and that was not always a happiness. The Dean's Watch, by Elizabeth Goudge

Thursday, November 01, 2007

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Then- in my childhood, in the dawn
Of a most stormy life- was drawn
From every depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that round me rolled
In its autumn tint of gold,
From the lightning in the sky
As it passed me flying by,
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.

'Alone' by Edgar Allan Poe

This opens the novel, Dragonwyck, by Anya Seton. Both the title of the book and the poem picque your interest, don't they?

I've been wanting to read, Katherine, by this author, but haven't gotten around to requesting a copy of it from one of our "Valnet" libraries. When I spotted this title by Seton on the bookshelf of an antique store this summer, I grabbed it. Besides, it was dirt cheap compared to their gorgeous, hardcover copy of The Black Stallion (which I was coveting a wee bit.)

Today I'm in the mood for a good classic gothic romance. Here's hoping Dragonwyck fits the bill.