Wednesday, January 29, 2014


Dinner Bells actually.

We all love food in this house. In fact if you ask any of the kids what their favorite things are their first response is always a food. In fact I asked them for this purpose.
What is your favorite thing?
Tyler- tacos(after fire)
Austin-John- Fish and chips (after guns of course)
Samuel - cereal in a box!
Nathaniel- Pancakes...with bacon and syrup.
Grace- cookies! momma! and fruit pie.
Evangeline - banana I would think. If she sees one from across the room she points and squeals.

I have been having looking for a way to help the kids feel like they have more stake in the household. I devised a plan for each child to have a day to cook. They choose the meal, make the list, and cook the entire thing. I help the boys and Daniel helps Grace on her day.

Monday- Nate
Tuesday - Tyler (aka Mexican night)
Wednesday - leftovers
Thursday- A.J.
Friday- Sam
Saturday- Grace and daddy
Sunday is all mine.

Sam wanted to make lasagna this past Friday and it was SPECTACULAR. A.J.'s  has been a win each week with a lemon dill Hake, stuffed burgers, and 2x baked potatoes. Tyler made some stellar Cheesy Chicken Burritos, and an amazing boiled dinner. Sam struggled the first week with focus and quit half way through. Nate made pancakes with hash browns, pineapple banana sauce, and bacon this week. Grace made chowder one week and grilled cheese the next. She wants to make fruit pie for dinner this week. We have to work on that one for sure.

We have been having fun and its nice to see the boys learning skills they are going to need in life. Grace really looks forward to Daddy cook time on "purple day"

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Feathers in the Sun

We have an old down comforter someone gave to us years ago when they bought a new one. It's probably about 8 or 9 years old. It's soft and worn and so very cozy. It's also quite old.
It has a small tear that I tied together with a hair tie until I could get to it. It also has a bunch of smaller holes now because the cat loves to play on it and chase the poofs.

The kids were all in my bed the other day. I was so tired because Evangeline had a rough night. I wanted the kids to go play, or go to sleep, or go to college. or something!

then I saw it.

I giant fluffy feather. It was high above Grace and Evie and it was softly falling down. The sun danced over the small wisps of feather edge and it made me smile.

Suddenly those babies couldn't be small long enough. We blew that feather around and caught it and giggled.

I felt like I was right where I wanted to be and I wanted to stop time. I was so overcome with pride and joy for the life I have.

It isn't easy here. Most days it isn't even fun. But we are working on it. Even if it takes a feather in the sun to remind me

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sometimes Healing Comes in Strange Places

Loosing  a Child

That phrase upsets me. I didn't LOOSE her. I know exactly where she is. I know she is safe and loved and comforted. I know she is waiting and I will see her again someday. I know Mary is watching over her until I can wrap her in my arms.

I hate the phrase
LOOSING a baby.
as though it were a tissue. or a shoe. or a set of keys.

babies aren't lost
You do not misplace them or forget where you had them last.

They are babies.
And when they pass before we hold them, or while we hold them, or after we have held them they aren't LOST

they are found.
In the arms of Mary. Held and safe and loved.

Because my heart cannot bear to think of any baby being LOST.

My sweet girl is not lost. She is Held.
as am I.
as we all are.

A moment of healing came in the few weeks past that I had not expected. Healing through the pain of another mother with aching arms. It never seems fair.

Sometimes I wonder if there is something wrong with me because after all this time I still grieve the space without her. I often think of how old she would be, what she would be like, and who she would become.
Some people just move on. right?
Sometimes I wonder why I cannot.or rather have not completely.

But these past few weeks have been different. I will miss her forever and will not be complete until I get to hold her in my arms.
I never did get to hold her in my arms.
I was so young. so alone. so confused. and so in denial.

For that Sweet Emma, I am forever sorry.

But I know she is held. I know she is loved. and I know she is waiting and it would seem after a brief moment the other day. that she has some friends as well.

peace comes in crazy places.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

45 Days

It's been 45 days since our van was stolen.

They never did find the thing. It is either out of state or it has been scrapped. Either way it's irrelevant.
That van was on it's last leg. It's inspection sticker was over a year expired, the doors fell off if you opened them wrong, the brake light was out, it smelled of something similar to old cheese, it would die if the brake light stayed down, it had a check engine light that stayed on for over a year, the oil gauge light came on every time you stopped, the front seats didn't move so I had to drive with a pillow behind me (since I am so short), and the brakes were going.

It was dying.
I don't care if it didn't move at all. the fact remains that someone took it. I don't care why or how. I don't understand why people don't understand that if it isn't yours DON'T take it. I don't care if it shows up on your door step. unless it's wrapped and addressed to you IT ISN'T YOURS!

I had been praying for a new van. This wasn't what I meant. Sometimes prayers are answered in ways we can never understand because it is all for his glory. In the end, the outcome was better than I could have imagined.

The van was replaced but there was more to it.
Again we were given amazing gifts of love and support.
A fractured family relationship was repaired.
Our community, church, family, and friends showed us what true selfless giving is really about.
In the end we were blessed.

I think about the people who stole our van often.
I was angry for a second. When my beautiful Grace cried giant tears of true loss and sorrow over her shoes and her car seat, I was ANGRY.
I don't care if you hurt me. So many people have and will again I am sure. My babies are a different story.

It's those moments I find it hardest to pray for the thieves. It's those moments that I need to pray for them the most. Because, anger can be so caustic. It destroys you from the inside out until all anyone sees is a bitter angry old person that cannot or will not smile.
I can't let them take any more from me then they have already
and so
I pray for them.

"Heavenly Father, you above all people know my heart and theirs. you know their motivations, their needs, and their wants. I ask you to bless them Lord because you, not I , are the final judge. Help them to be so blessed they hear your words and return to you. Help them to listen to your calling and change so that they do not inflict pain on anyone else intentionally again"
In your name ~ Amen

I have prayed it more in the last two weeks then ever before. I am certain I will be praying it more in the weeks to come.

Monday, January 13, 2014


I hate to admit it. I am a yeller.

I yell when something scares me. I yell when I am angry.
I yell when I am frustrated. I yell when I am being ignored.

It's terrible really.

and my kids tune me out.

I was starting to really worry that maybe I missed something with Nate until yesterday. I was ready to yell and I stopped. I got eye level with him and explained it to him. Without frustration or impatience.
I watched it click.

So today I banished yelling.

I prayed hard before my feet even hit the floor. I knew I was undertaking a HUGE thing. I didn't allow myself  to say " I can't"

I showed up and gave my kids every ounce of what I want them to give me.

One whole day without yelling. (though at the end of the day I may have spoken a little louder than need be when Sammy hurt Evangeline by playing to rough)
But I am calling it a win.

Praise God.
Today I had the grace to make it happen. I will make tomorrow the same.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Breath in

Sam had a tough early week this week. At one point he launched something large and heavy across the room. He had plans that night to meet up with his coach from last year. I wanted so badly to pull the pin and not let him go. I wanted to ground him for eternity. I wanted to cry and scream and yell and stamp my feet much like a child would do.
Breath In.
Breath Out.

 the thoughts running through my head were making the room spin.

"it's because you are a bad mother. You caused his autism and now look at this. If you don't get this under control now he will be a lost cause when he is older. It's all your fault."

That loop plays over and over in my head at least once a day. It's so painful because somewhere inside I am still not passed that second sentence. Getting there, just not yet.
Breath In
Breath Out.

It isn't the end of the world. No one got hurt.
Breath In
What is it that he NEEDS right now?
Gentle -
He must be really anxious.
Breath Out

he was anxious because he was going to see coach. I took a few more deep breaths and went upstairs. We talked about why he was so upset and what was wrong with his reaction. He hugged me(without prompting) and apologized.

He went down and  made  tried to make my coffee.

He went to visit with Coach and he had a great time.
Some days I just need to Breath in and remember

Thursday, January 9, 2014


This blog has always been about Sammy and life with Autism in the house. But so much has changed. I just don't see it the way I did before. Yes, Sam still has autism but it doesn't consume us. it completes who he is in a unique and special way.

So on that note - things will be changing at YLMBreadless.

Some big changes. Some little changes.

It's the new year and I picked a word to focus on this year.


 I try to be gentle with the people around me.I often fail with the ones I love the most. I explode all over everyone sometimes. Seeing it afterwards makes me feel terrible. 
But where does it start?

It starts here

right here.
If I spoke to my friends the way I speak to myself I wouldn't have any friends.
from looking in the mirror and finding every flaw to mentally flogging myself over every little mistake. I find every imperfection and dwell on it. I tell myself that if I were a better mother / wife / friend /housekeeper these things wouldn't happen.
the fingerprints on the stove would be cleaned already.
my kids would listen better
my house would be picked up
there wouldn't be laundry on my landing

I call myself names and I find every single flaw, wrinkle, and imperfection.

It creates a level of constant frustration and unhappiness. It makes me want to hide from the world. It steals all of my joy. It destroys my relationships and my heart.

So starting right now. I will be more gentle with me so I can be more gentle with others.