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Climb The Mountain

Since I live in Colorado within sight of the Rocky Mountains, I know a little about climbing mountains. Especially enough to know there are two extremely different types of hikes. Last fall, my youngest son and I took a hike in Rocky Mountain National Park near Estes Park. I carried a small top anti theft backpack for our light jackets, water bottles, a few snacks, and our cameras. While we covered three miles roundtrip to

Helping Special Families

I can still remember walking out of Children’s Hospital on a September afternoon in 1998. My brain struggled to process the geneticist’s diagnosis that my 22-month-old daughter had Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS). Caused by a rare and random genetic mutation, CdLS affects growth and development resulting in small stature, (often) limb differences, developmental delays, autistic-like behavior, and many other issues. On one hand, I felt relieved to know it wasn’t my fault that Anna was

The Pitcher of Support

When making lemonade, a container is as necessary as the ingredients. Imagine trying to stir together lemon juice, sugar, and water … on the countertop. Nope. We need a pitcher. Something to surround and hold the ingredients in place. The same can be said of parents raising kids with developmental, behavioral, and/or health needs. We have picked up the spoon to stir together the sweet, sour, and normal parts of life. But, without a system

Pick Up the Spoon

I love the movie Facing the Giants. Not just because of the David vs. Goliath football story, but because of the strong faith message. In one scene, the discouraged coach is told the story of two farmers who prayed for rain, but only one plowed his fields and planted seeds. Which one had real faith? The one who prepared for  rain. He was ready when the answer arrived. The same can be said of parenting

The Water of Life

What fills your day? Probably some of the same things I face. Work. Housework. Bills to pay. Laundry. Cooking and cleaning. Children. Responsibilities and deadlines. Relaxation and simple pleasures. Drudgery and dreams. They all add up to a life overflowing with activity. So, what if something sour happens in one area? Like a child is diagnosed with a rare genetic condition such as Cornelia de Lange syndrome or another child develops allergy-induced asthma? Life goes

Not From Concentrate

When it comes to making lemonade, I’ll admit I’m the first to reach for the can of frozen concentrate. Just add water. As my seven-year-old son says, “Easy-Peasy-Lemon-Squeezy.” But to make old-fashioned, fresh-squeezed lemonade, we have to get messy. Find the juicer and a knife. Cut the lemons in half, turn them upside down and ram them onto the point. Then press down and twist until all the juice drains out, leaving only an empty lemon

Parenting Outside the Plan

When I grew up, I wanted to be a Mommy like the ones I’d seen on TV. The ones with the loving children who got along. The ones who wore a string of pearls while fixing meals from scratch. The ones whose biggest parenting problems were easily solved within half an hour and whose houses always looked super-clean. Well, I grew up. And became a Mom whose family bears little resemblence to the fictional ones

Making Lemonade – FREE for a Limited Time

When life gives you lemons, how you approach, process, and transform them makes all the difference. Especially for parents facing the sour experiences of raising a child with developmental, behavioral, and/or health needs. Making Lemonade: Parents Transforming Special Needs incorporates practical strategies from a Christian worldview and the emotional stories of parents (including me!) busy in the kitchen of life to offer readers hope and encouragement as they face their own lemons. Mirroring the steps

Processing Difficult News

What do you do with news you didn’t expect? I’ve learned it all depends on what kind of news it is. (Since good news is much easier to accept than bad news.) But it’s also important to have a strong foundation for life since the stability of family and faith keep the boat from rocking too much.   On Thursday, I had a meeting with my daughter’s educational team to discuss her autistic-like behaviors. The

Overcoming Obstacles

Imagine facing a mountain over 19,000 feet high. Do you think you could make it to the top? Now imagine facing the same mountain without your legs.   That’s what happened recently, when three American veterans from three different wars scaled Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro. With only one human leg between the three of them. They did it as an example to other amputees to send the message that whatever your disability, you can still find