Sunday, December 31, 2006

Nurture ~ Love ~ Inspire

My creation

The sweet souls who love, cherish, inspire and protect the angel in you are your guardian angels.........They are your Friends and Family.

Happy New Years 2007

Every year all over the world people from all walks of life celebrate to usher in the New Year.

It is a time to remember that mankind has a chance to have a 'New' beginning.

It is a time of Thanksgiving to God for a beautiful year with better prospects in the subsequent years.

It is a non-negotiable period to rekindle the simple warmth of family, community and friendship.

It is most of all a period to appreciate the virtue of humility for being one of a number that lived to see the dawn of the New Day in a New Year

May we all be blessed in 2007 with food, shelter, health, happiness, friends and family.

May every child be cherished, recognized for their unique gifts.

"Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again. And what do we teach our children? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique. In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you. Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move. You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven. You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel. And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is, like you, a marvel? You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children." ~ Pablo Picasso
Sweet, sweet Angels

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Last night a star fell from Heaven....

and landed in the loving arms of my bestfriends sister.

We welcome with Great Joy to our World,

Sean David
7lbs 12ozs

He came blessed with an extra chromosome on his 21st pair.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Simple Simplicity & Joy

Celebrate each day with Simple Simplicity and Joy!!

What could be more beautiful than spending time with friends......
Emma Sage & Claudia
Emma Sage & Claudia, her best friend since they were a year and a-half. We are going to have a tea party next week, since school is out.

and our everyday friend, Abbie. These two get to play together everyday after school.....and they are developing a very sweet friendship!

Friends, Abbie & Emma Sage

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Oh this child of mine.....

Yesterday, Emma Sage responded to me in a very 'fresh' voice....Sometimes when I remind her of something, or ask her to do something [and she is not in the mood] she will respond with a "OOOOOOOOOOKKKKKKKKKK, MOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMM!"

to which I look at her and say "Don't you get fresh with me young lady!"

to which she looks right back at me and says "I'm not a LADY, You're a LADY, I'm a little girl!"

LOL!!!! So I had to hold the laughter back and again explain that even that response was 'fresh' and to watch her tone.

Oh, this child of mine.....

What a Magical and Beautiful Birthday I had

Oh What a Magical and Beautiful Birthday I had......While there were many moments that tears came to my eyes ~ they echoed beautiful thoughts of my Mother, who I missed dearly today ~ But the most amazing thing was I felt her presence around me all day long. There were two moments of the day, that I truly believe my Mother's Spirit was involved with.

I received happy thoughts from my online friends at Trisomy21Online. While I have not been an active member this past year [I actually made a New Years Resolution to pull away from the Internet this past year to focus on family and home more.] But as the events of the year unfolds ~ it was my online friends who many times carried me through these it was to them I turned to this morning.

Two Birthday Buddies from the board are my friends Kathi [Mom to the beautiful Lizzy] and Belen [Mom to Sir Reece]. We have celebrated out shared birthday online for the last five years. I've met Kathi in real life once and Belen and I are both home schooling our precious ones with T21.

My dear friend Rebecca [again, an online friend] who came into my life because of the blessing of Down syndrome in our lives] made me a beautiful virtual Birthday card with one of my favorite pictures of Emma Sage ~ She also called me on the phone to say "Happy Birthday" because she knew how much I was missing my Mom today.

While I was visiting the board, I posted about my dillema with Emma Sage and her one and only request from Santa ~ ELMO [the new, you can't find him anywhere Elmo]. You see, in the fall, I happened to be at Walmart the day they got them in.....shelves full. I showed him to Emma Sage and she laughed and laughed and I asked her "Do you think you would like Santa to bring this to you?" to which she replied "No, I want a Baby Doll"....and off she walked towards the doll section. I didn't buy Elmo that day, as I figured, while she laughed and laughed and thought he was cute, she didn't really want him.

Well, I was wrong. Her Christmas list had gone like this all along.....'Dear Santa, Please bring Baby Doll, Love Emma Sage' and she would sit and write that list over and over again [we used this as handwriting practice].....well about 10 days ago, in the middle of writing her list, Emma Sage asks me how to spell E*L*M*O,,,,,,to which I tell her and now her list and her request is just that.......'Dear Santa, Please bring ELMO, Love Emma Sage'!!!! and Elmo is no where to be found.

Over the weekend, Greta and my sister-in-law, Heidi searched far and wide....finding out that on Monday morning Toys R Us were supposed to have some on the shelves when the store opened.....only problem being for us is......the one person who would help me, my Mother, was not able to lend a hand, as she always did my whole life. I provide in-home childcare, so I can't get out, but my Mother would always come over to sit for me, if I ever had to get out somewhere..........and then!

This is where I felt my Mother's spirit so strongly.........I get a post from one of the new Mom's [on this beautiful journey of the road less traveled], who mainly just lurks on the board to e-mail her. We talk on the phone and it turns out that her Mother heard about my little girl who changed her mind at the last minute with her Christmas List, and got an ELMO doll for Emma Sage! So Michelle's Mother played Christmas Elf and brightened my day and made me realize the precious gift we have in family and friends. Thank you Michelle and Mom for blessing me with such a beautiful gesture!

As my day moved forward, I got a few calls from family and friends, making my heart sing from all the love shared with me......and every few minutes Emma Sage would come over to me from what she was doing and give me a big hug and say "Happy Birthday Mommy......I love you SO much"! in her sweet little voice.

The most powerful realization for me that my Mother's Love & Spirit still surround me was as I was finishing up lunch with the children and I realized it was getting very close to the moment, where I always got a phone call from my Mother celebrating my birth........a few tears came to my eyes. Just then I hear a truck pull up in front and I see the UPS man delivering a box - I bring it in and open it -

Inside a red box, tied with a white ribbon was the most beautiful silver Motherhood necklace [from AJ, one of my sweet little babysitting crew]......................and a card that describes the pendant as Motherhood, an eternal bond "MotherHood - Celebrating the eternal bond of Mother and Child". I couldn't hold back the tears to the powerful message of this gift - and the timing of its arrival.......I can't help but think my dear Mother was trying so hard to let me know that her love and spirit will always surround me.

Shona and AJ, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I've never had a Motherhood necklace and will wear this one all the days of my life.

and the rest of the day was filled with lots of laughter and joy....and a few more tears.

I made my favorite dinner and Greta and Emma Sage made my favorite cake. As I sat at the table with my precious family, I gave thanks for the gift of life, the gift of family, the gift of friends and the magic of a Beautiful Birthday!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Aunt Jan,,,,,this is for you!

Aunt Jan, this link is for you......well actually, for you and all the kids out there. Remember the cool Pumpkin carving? Well here is our favorite is the website of the Author Jan Brett. I adore her books [as do the children]....I think it is because of our Scandinavian heritage that I am so drawn into her artwork.

I use this site almost daily for ideas and activity worksheets for our homeschooling Emma Sage.

So I'm giving you two links. The first is the Jan Brett [the main website ~ click on her name]

and this direct link to the Decorate the Christmas Tree [click the word Christmas Tree]

Have fun.....I know you will just love this one....and don't forget to add the blinking lights, they are along the sides of the ornaments. Emma Sage likes to also add the lights to the presents! lol!!!

Friday, December 15, 2006


I have always been a person who could be moved to tears easily. My children laugh at me, because I cry at sentimental commercials.

Over the coarse of the last few days, I have cried tears of Joy and tears of sadness. I am missing my Mother dearly. When Katrina got her acceptance letter yesterday, the tears of Joy and excited where quickly changed to sorrow, when in excitement as she was on the phone with Grammy and PopPop, I said, "You'll have to call Nana next!" and it hit me......

Also, Christmas was my Mothers most favorite time of the year......she always made the season one of Magic and Wonder for all of us,,,her family and friends. She had a heart of gold and a soft, gentle way about her, that made everyone happy and joyful.

I am also dreading Monday. You see, Monday is my 43rd Birthday....and it will be the first birthday that I do not get a phone call at the moment I was born from my Mother telling me how much she loves and cherished me and that at this exact moment, so many years before, I blessed her by being her baby girl.

So, today, when I was getting my camera on to take the most adorable picture of Abbie and Emma Sage cuddled together on the couch reading a book together,,,,,,and the camera fell out of my hands and broke.....well, the tears came flooding out and I have'nt been able to keep them at bay for very long.

I know the camera can be replaced [when I don't know, as we don't have that kind of money in our budget to make such a purchase at this time, especially since we have college tuition down payments due the first week of January......and my is almost like an extension of me.......I take photographs often, and it gives me such great joy.... it is going to be so sad during the next few weeks of such a special time of the year to not record our memories.

So enjoy the pictures I titled in folder as 'TheDayMyCameraBroke' as they may be the last for a while.

These are of Emma Sage working on a craft project to encourage fine motor skills. She is such a patient and detail oriented little girl. She did the whole project by herself....even making the knot at the end of the string. I helped tied the ends together, but she patiently strung each small bead and bell. [Which I found hard because the end was starting to fray.....but she just persevered]

We are going to bake and wrap all weekend, so I may not be online for a while......May you cherish these days......reflecting and honoring what is most meaningful to YOU. Celebrate the season with simple simplicity.

She is just so sweet.....

I love how she is so expressive and how that tongue always pops out when she is concentrating! lol!
Look how proud she is!!!

and one last.......the look of "OK, Mom, stopping taking pictures now!".......I wonder how long it will be before she realizes Mommy is not snapping away!!!! I know she is such a little ham-bone that she will miss all the photography attention real soon!



The topic of adoption is forefront in my daily thoughts and prayers these days, as a dear friend is beginning this journey.....

and another dear friend had a wonderful post on her blog titled: "Hey BradJolina.....about that adoption"

If you are interested in adoption a precious child with Down syndrome, please use the resource listed in the above blog or click here: and Contact Robin

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Me and My Daddy.....

Can you say "Daddy's Girl"!!!!


Congratulations Katrina!!!!

She got her acceptance letter to her first choice school our first born, our Katrina Leigh is heading to Florida next fall to study at FLAGLER COLLEGE!!!!

Her major is Elementary Education and Exception Student Education [special education].......and we are so very proud of her!!!

Here is a peek at her future home for the next four years.



and Emma Sage is just so excited, because Katrina told her that when she comes to visit her at school, she can also go visit Cinderella's Castle!!!!

What an exciting new journey, parents of an almost college student!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

This child......

This child just cracks me up......and when she isn't making me laugh, she is making me sigh with delight at how sweet and kind she is.

We were at the Field Hockey Banquet last night. Upon entering to check-in, Emma Sage says to Pat Stark [the Mother at the door]....."I have a tatoo on my back!"

To which Pat looks a bit surprised and says "You do?"

to which Emma Sage replies "YES and it is beautiful!"


Her other big thing these days is to say "Hello Sweetheart" to everyone she meets. She sure does brighten your day!

We have been so busy with the day-to-day routines, on top of enjoying the preperations, music and baking of the season. Emma Sage is so excited about Christmas this year. She fully understands the concept of Santa Clause and presents and writes and re-writes her list for him everyday. She has also shown a bit of materialism when at the store by pointing to everything she see's and asking for which I reply that she needs to add it to her list and ask Santa Clause, but he only brings 3 presents. "Three presents....Oh WOW!" is how she happily responds!

I hope your days are Merry and Bright.

Oh, and I participated in an ornament exchange and will post pictures soon. I just got my package in the mail and feel bad that mine is a few days late.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Trimming the Tree........


Trimming the Tree 2006

We have been getting ready for is little Miss helping to decorate the tree.

Thoughts and Prayers......

Thoughts and Prayers for our dear friend Nicole and her family as they look towards GOD for an answer.

We are praying so hard that little one will find the perfect forever home.

Prayers for Nicole and Family

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Dinner at Panera's
What a smile.....waiting for dinner at Panera's, Emma Sage's favorite place to eat. She loves the broccoli-cheddar soup and bagette to dip in the soup!!! Yummy!

Being Silly!!!!

What an ad for Paneras!

"OK, when is my soup coming?"

Meeting the Big Guy!!!

Emma Sage just loved this Santa, and he spent a long time chatting with her!

"OK, Mom, are we done shopping yet?"

We were shopping for our cousins at Toys R Us and we turn the corner and Emma Sage yells....."Look, that's me and my boyfriend!" I love it! The ad from last spring is back up on the big display!!!!!

Helping to decorate one of the small trees. My Mother loved small trees like this. Oh, how I miss my Mother so........

and we got lots of little things done today......finishing our shopping for cousins and friends. Tomorrow we get our tree, and then finish decorating inside [Greta and I did the outside over the last two weeks]. Emma Sage is so excited.

Next week is baking and finishing up our hand-made projects.

I hope you are all enjoying the preperation time of the season............Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"Hello, Who's calling Please?"

That is how my sweet little girl answers the phone, and she just loves to answer the phone.

"Mommy, it's for you!"


The stomach bug is still lurking [I've been Lysoling everything, but it seems to be making its rounds, as Katrina and Otto seem to be the hardest hit. Greta & Rick have escaped its grips so far, and I had a small battle and really up'd my vitamin C and I was feeling much better within 12 hours] But it is running rampent at the schools, so the kids are exposed all day long.

But never-the-less, today was such a beautiful day.

The sun was shinning so warmly on a very brisk day. We got to play outside and got lots of fresh air in our lungs. Then off to dance class.

These were the moments that made me just sigh.....Emma Sage loves dancing class.....she gets so giggly and excited as we get dressed and do her hair. She has some sweet little friends in class and they are always so happy to see Emma Sage in the studio.

I get to peek through a crack [actually it is the little hole where the thread for the binds gets fed through] but it is enough that if I find the right position hole, I can get a perfect view of the dancers. Emma Sage listens so well and follows her teacher exactly. She is just so precious in line doing her positions and when it comes time to tap....she is smiling from ear-to-ear the whole time. In class there are two little girls, Claire and Sara that always want to stand on either side of Emma Sage...........these simple actions of these little girls just make my heart soar!

When we got home, we worked on school work, until Abbie got home and then we had a Christmas Caroling sing-a-long....What fun!

Greta got to go trail riding today and Otto is busy learning plays for his first basketball game on Saturday.

But the most exciting news of our day is........

Katrina received her first two acceptance letters for College!!!!

She heard from California University of PA and Bloomsburg. Both schools that have outstanding special education/education programs, and California University has a wonderful SLP [Speech Language Pathology] program.

She is quite excited, but she is eagerly awaiting on her first choice school, which she applied for Early Decision. Her heart is set on Flagler College and she will hear on December 15th for Early Decision. If she is accepted, Flagler is where she will attending.

The other colleges she applied to have rolling admissions and you have to let them know by May 1st. With Flagler, if accepted, she has to accept and provide a down-payment on January 5th.

She has been working hard and saving her money. We are so proud of her.

Emma Sage, her sweet little sister has been her inspiration and roll model. Her decision to major in education and specialize in speech and langauge stems from her relationship with her sister and her volunteering with PALS [which she is now the National President of for 2006-2007].

When I hear people worry about the impact of a sibling with T21 on their other children, I want to shout out......."Don't worry, the impact will most likely be so positive that your heart will pause with wonder and delight!"

So,,,,today was such a beautiful day.....and I give thanks.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Christmas Party......

We had our local Down syndrome group Christmas party on Saturday. Emma Sage was so excited all morning, eagerly getting ready to go see her friends.

When we arrived [we rode in Daddy's car on a bumpy road] she ran in with a smile from ear to ear. She stopped in the middle of the wooden dance floor and proceeds to throw up a little bit. We clean her up, clean up and disinfect the floor and figure she had motion sickness from the ride over.

She plays and dances, but is not her usualy 'bubbly' self. She did get up on stage and sing Christmas Carols [and what a little ham-bone this child is.....she is such the performer].

The big jolly guy in the velvet red suit arrived and Emma Sage was just besides herself.

After the exchanging of gifts, my little girl looks over to me and says "Mommy, my belly hurts real bad" to which she proceeds to finish empting the contents of her stomach that were not spewed all over the floor earlier.

We pack up and head a warm bath and a night full of vomiting everytime she took a drink.

My poor little girl, she is very rarely ill, and of all days for her to get a stomach bug, but at her 'PARTY' as she thinks the party was just for her! lol!!!

Here are a few pictures from our day.....
Abbie, Emma Sage, Devonie and Hannah. Abbie is our friend that visits us in the mornings and after school, Devonie is Emma Sage's 'bestest friend' or so she tells us! and Hannah lives in our township also and is one of three [triplets]

Dancing with her best friend
Dancing with Devonie and her Daddy. We are going to send Devonie an invitation for a tea party after the holidays, as I just love how these two play together and are really developing a little friendship.

Move over Fergie
American out, here comes Emma Sage

Now it is your turn
Sharing the time in the limelight!!!

Her favorite place to be.....
This child just loves to perform and she just loves to sing!!!

Giving the big guy a kiss
Giving a big kiss to Santa......

and then I stopped taking pictures as you really don't want to see a stomach flu in full force!

I hope you are all well and not catching any of these yucky bugs going around [ah, the joy of winter season]

How to be a hero......

What a wonderful list.........

Your Child's HeroBy Chick Moorman and Thomas Haller
and exerpt from ezine:

Who would your child write about if given this assignment? Do you wish he or she would write about you? It could happen. Especially if your actions today are heroic, if you behave like a hero in front of your children. Listed below are several ways to be a hero to your children. Add them to your repertoire of heroic actions. Do it as a Father’s Day gift to yourself. You deserve it and so do your children.

1.) Be the good Samaritan. Stop to help a stranded motorist. Rake the leaves for an elderly couple. Bake cookies for the nursing home residents. Allow your children to help and to witness a caring father in action.
2.) Be approachable. Tell your teens that the front porch light is a signal. When the light is on, it means you are available to talk, even if you are asleep. Tell the little ones that your easy chair is your listening chair. If they ever have a concern, question, or frustration, they can ask to sit in the listening chair with their father. Follow through.
3.) Attend sporting events, concerts, and school activities. Be visible in the stands when your child participates. If she can see you, she knows you can see her. Demonstrate good sportsmanship and appropriate manners.
4.) Search for solutions. Focus on problem solving with your children. Minimize blame and punishment. Focus on finding solutions instead. Give your children a model of a father who cares about finding ways to fix things rather than making people pay for their errors.
5.) Hold your children accountable. Holding your children accountable for their actions and choices is one of the most loving things you can do as a father. If you don’t hold your children accountable, someone else might have to.
6.) Be consistent. It’s not the severity of a consequence that has the impact. It’s the certainty. The kiss of death for any discipline system is inconsistency. Hold your children accountable for their actions with an open heart and do it with consistency.
7.) Take their suggestions seriously. Your children have ideas about what to do on your next vacation. They have certain places they like to eat. They have ideas on how to spend entertainment money. It is not necessary to use all their suggestions. It is necessary to hear them all, think about them, and give them serious consideration.
8.) Teach. Teach your child to hit a baseball, ride a bike, and use a fork appropriately. Resist the effort to outsource important learning to other groups and individuals. Teach your child to care for pets, treat all living things with respect, and appreciate nature. Model exactly how loving and compassionate a strong man can be.
9.) Invest in experiences rather than things. Your child does not need a brand new $400 sandbox with a swing set attached that comes preassembled. He needs the experience of going out in the backyard with his father and building a sandbox together. One more new toy is not necessary. What is needed is the experience of taking a trip to the lake, to the library, or to a rodeo.
10.) Make charity visible. Let your children see your trips to the Red Cross to give blood. Let them participate in deciding how to spend the money in the family charity jar. Let them help pick out the coat that goes to the Coats for Kids program. Allow them to put the money in the church plate as it is passed down the pew.
Want to be a hero in your child’s life? Add some of these ideas to your toolbox of parenting strategies. Someday you just might discover your child’s writing assignment entitled, “My Father, My Hero.”

Chick Moorman and Thomas Haller are the authors of The 10 Commitments: Parenting with Purpose. They are two of the world's foremost authorities on raising responsible, caring, confident children. They publish a free monthly e-zine for parents. To sign up for it or obtain more information about how they can help you or your group meet your parenting needs, visit their website today:
Article Source:

Friday, December 01, 2006

Two of my Angels............

My creation

"The Ring"

Emma Sage has a favorite new song.

A few weeks ago, we were pleasantly surprised to open our National Geographic for Kids to find an article by a young woman with Down syndrome, titled "I Have Down Syndrome"

Then we got an invitation in the mail from the National Down syndrome Society to attend a CD signing for a new release by a young woman with Down syndrome [and lo-and-behold, it is the same beautiful young woman from the article] at Simon Pearce in New York City.

Simon Pearce is a renowned glass and pottery artist and has retail stores and a resturant......he also has a handsome son who happens to be sporting and extra chromosome on his 21st pair....not to mention, he is originally from County Cork, Ireland, the same place my dear, beloved Mother was from.

So it was destiny for us......Emma Sage just adores this song and already knows all the words and sings along to the clip we play on the computer.....and we all love New York City, especially during the Holiday Season, so we are heading into New York on Thursday for the signing and then stopping to see the tree, watch the ice skaters and have dinner. It will just be Greta, Emma Sage and I, as Katrina has to work and Otto has basketball [which Daddy will have to take him too!]

I checked the weather and it will be sunny and clear, but much colder than the [can you believe it,,,,,67 degree weather] we had today!

You can listen to the song here........

and here are the words of my little girls newest favorite song!

The Ring
Words by Melissa Riggio
Music by Rachel Fuller

I'm in the Ring outside
I'm following my belief
I'm looking at the sky
I saw God following my heart
I'm an ordinary woman

The Ring is falling down my way
The wind is blowing me away
The Ring is falling down, down my way
The wind is blowing me away

And so I came back to
The center of the Ring
Am I just a broken angel?
God has sent me here to heal
To be an ordinary woman

Rachel Fuller - piano, vocals, backing vocals, keyboard
Stuart Ross - bass guitar
Jolyon Dixon - acoustic guitar
Jodie Hawkes - drums

Producer - Rachel Fuller
Engineered and Mixed - Myles Clarke
Mastering - Jon Astley
Executive Producer - Pete Townshend