Sip and Share

What’s the best part about making lemonade? Pouring the mixture over ice in a tall glass and then taking it out to the porch. To sit on a rocker or swing and take sips of the refreshingly cold drink. To pass it along to a friend as you catch up on all the latest news. For the past two months, we’ve been exploring the metaphor of transforming the sour experiences of having a child with special needs

Chilling and Waiting

One common step in recipes for making lemonade is to “chill before serving.” So the mixture of lemon juice, sugar and water gets to sit inside a cold, dark refrigerator until someone decides it’s been long enough and pulls the pitcher out to pour a glass full of cold and refreshing lemonade. Sound like fun? Not in real life either. Waiting is never easy, especially when we can’t see what’s happening. But trust me, something

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

Fruity Siblings

The second time I found out I was pregnant, I cried for a week. Not happy tears. No. Fearful, overwhelmed, I-can’t-do-this tears. In fact, I begged my husband not to tell anyone the news until I could say it without crying. Why? Because I had a tiny six-month-old daughter at home and was just barely starting to figure out what it meant to be a parent. It’s probably a good thing that I didn’t know that

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

The Sugar of Hope

Life can be very sour, especially when working through the messy emotions that result when things don’t go as we expected. (See previous posts Parenting Outside the Plan and Not From Concentrate.) The good news about making lemonade is that we get to add sugar. In this case, hope. A feeling of expectation or desire for something to happen. A desire with anticipation. Something sweet to counteract the sour. We all hope things get better.

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

Friday Focus – Patrick Henry Hughes

What if you were born without eyes or the ability to straighten your legs and walk? How would you describe your disabilities? Well, if you were Patrick Hughes, you’d say, “Not disabilities at all. More … ability.” He began playing the piano by ear before his first birthday and was taking requests by his 2nd. To see the rest of his journey, click here. (Caution: tissues may be necessary) Did you hear what his dad