Friday, April 30, 2010

What Would You Say To Your High School Self?

I read this post today on my friends blog, Shooting Stars, who first read about this on Dystel and Goderich Literaray Managment's blog.

Author Sarah Mlynowski came up with a brilliant marketing plan for her new YA novel, Gimme A Call. She asked YA novelists what they would say to their high school selves if they could. Here are some of my favorites:

Dear HS self: There are two reasons you have no girlfriend: 1. no confidence. 2. poor hygiene. #startwithnumbertwo – John Green

Dear HS self: You are NOT FAT. You will be, but you're not now, so enjoy it. – Sara Zarr

Dear HS self: Facebook will be invented. Are you sure you want your friend to take that picture? – Julia DeVillers

As for what I would say to myself:

Dear HS self: You know that so yummy dark gorgeous guy you’re dating? Keep a hold of him! He only gets better with age! (And he will love you after you're covered in stretch marks.)

Now, all of you reading this, what would you say to your high school self?


Monday, April 19, 2010

It's Something Special

I get asked how I can stay so happy and so positive while having two children with disablilites. My first answer is, "Why wouldn't I be happy?"

I know it's not proper to answer a question with a question. Well, don't you want your child to grow up as happy as they could? No matter what kind of personalities they have you plan to make the best life for them. Yes, I admit. It is hard sometimes but isn't being a parent, period, hard?

The best way I can explaine what it's like to be a parent in my situation is with one of my favorite poems.

"Welcome to Holland"
By Emily Perl Kingsley, 1987. All rights reserved.

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away...because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss. But...if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Funny moments at Disneyland

Today two moments from our trip kept sticking out in my mind. First was about my little girl. She wanted cotten candy so bad, but I kind of freak out about getting stiky fingers that constantly go into the mouth when the kids are still going on rides (it's like licking the germs from bunches of other hands...shiver....gag). So after two days of asking we finally baught her some on our way back to our hotel.

This was her reaction!

Yes, I feel the same way about the pink sweet goodness.

The second memory makes me laugh a little more. My family informed me that I have too much energy and they have a hard time keeping up with me. I mean I could have kept going all day at the park, but had to stop because the rest of the group were falling down dead on spot.
Here's the proof.

Really, he was fine. I only let him stay like this for the photo then moved him. But it's no lie. We stopped to get ice cream and less than 10 seconds later, he dropped, was out, zonked!

He wasn't the only one. Paisley couldn't keep up either. Luckily, she waited until we were going back to the hotel.

See, I know how to get my kids to bed on time!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Slideshow of Disneyland Trip 2010

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Disney Trip

We are back and the Smiths had a blast! Why is it that life is never the same after Disney? This year we took my little 17-year-old sister with us (it was nice to have one adult per child). The park was almost empty on Sunday makingit possible to get through 90% of Disneyland. Which was a good thing too, because we finished Disney and California Adventure Monday leaving Tuseday and Wednesday for our favorite rides. I mentioned before that it was a good thing almost finishing the whole park Sunday, well it seemed like on Tuesday and Wednesday everyone in America came to Disneyland. It was so full we could barely walk around. (Thank you Disney for giving us those special needs passes so we could go right up the exits and board the rides)

Seth got wiped out halfway through the first day and fell alseep when we took a break for ice cream and fell asleep on the cement steps. NO JOKE there are photos for proof. I got attacked by Goofy, he ran up out of no where and kissed me. Seth huged every Princess and female character (yes, he will grow up to be a ladies man). Dom wouldn't have anything to do with the girls nor characters that could be remotely prissy- AT ALL- notice he is absent from a lot of photos.

Did I mention the lovely weather? Well, it was G-R-E-A-T! Yes, very warm, very nice. Except for Tuesday morning, started out a bit chilly but warmed up later in the day. We all fell so in love with the sun that we forgot it's still winter back here at home in winter-topia Idaho. When we drove through Sardeen Canyon and hit a snow storm, the Smith family cried.

California and Las Vegas really reminded me how much I LOVE summer. And how much I miss it when it's gone.

Oh, and we had a bit of fun with the California Adventure letters to spell out my name.