Saturday, December 31, 2011

What a year

2011 was quite the roller coaster ride. Hopeful that 2012 will be a wildly successful year and that everyone stays happy and healthy.

Let's see what we did in 2011:

  • The year started out nice and calm.  Make a good bit of resolutions so I kept and some went by the wayside.
  • Maddy went to Monster Jam with her boyfriend and did really well with the LOUD noises.  It was an "anything for love" outing for her.
  • This was the month of dr. appointments.  Those yearly check-ups, never much fun but a necessary evil.
  • Maddy started in Special Olympics in January.  She was on the track team and loved going to practice each week.
  • We managed to get everything done including Girl Scout events, church events and arranging time for the boyfriend.
  • What a whirlwind month this was.  Every day on the calendar was full.  
  • Track practices and her very first Special Olympics tournament. She did great and medal-ed in every event.
  • Maddy begin a bible study of the basic Tenants of Faith
  • The month closed out with a trip to Vegas.  Always so very thankful for my Mother who comes to my house to keep watch over the child and dog.
  • Track practice, and tournaments continued
  • The prom was on the 9th.  Maddy and the boyfriend had a fabulous time
  • We attended a special charity event for Special Olympics and Maddy was able to mix and mingle with the Houston Astros.
  • In May we made the drive to meet my aunt for lunch and a wonderful time was had by all.  It is nice to reconnect with family.
  • Maddy completed her bible study and was baptized on the 10th
  • The church held a special service for all the kiddos that completed the bible study and they were all confirmed.  We had a table full of family in attendance, it was an amazing day.
  • The month started with my family reunion.  The weekend was filled with love, laughter and family stories.
  • Maddy began Special Olympics swim team.  
  • For the first time EVER Maddy went away to camp for 5 days.
  • While Maddy was at camp we began the preparations to retain Guardianship for when she turned 18
  • The day Maddy left for camp my Mom fell and hurt herself.  We would not find out until a week later that she had burst her L1 vertebra
  • Mother begin the long journey of recovery.  We had hallucinations, a stay in a Houston hospital and then a move to a rehab facility in her home town.
  • Maddy had her first swim tournament and medal-ed in every event.  She loves the tournaments!
  • Most of my month was taken up by driving to check on my Mom once a week and helping her with her long journey of recovery.  She was fitted for a brace that would be on her for several months.
  •  This is a rinse and repeat month.  Look at what I did in July and that is August.
  • The highlight of the month was Mom going home on the 12th.
  • Maddy was thrilled as the Fright Night remake came to theaters.  She loved it so much she managed to convince enough people to take her she saw it 5 times at the movies.
  • Maddy had a swim tournament in town and Mark went with us.  He was there to see her receive her very first gold medal.
  • Mother was making more and more progress towards being independent again
  • Maddy broke up with her boyfriend of over a year.  It was a traumatic day for all involved.
  • Maddy turned 18 and for 4 days she was a legal adult. 
  • Mark and I became parents again.  We are official legal guardians
  • Oct. 7th was a huge milestone for us.  Maddy had gone one year seizure free!  (Thank goodness we are still seizure free)
  • Maddy had her wisdom teeth removed.  She was quite the Chipmunk Cheeks.
  • The SaveOnBrew business was in full swing with some great press both locally and nationally.  My new duties included some PR work as well as Database Management.
  • Thanksgiving was a big milestone for Mom, she drove herself to my house for Thanksgiving.
  • SaveOnBrew continued to get great press
  • My niece and my best friend both graduated college. One a BA and one a Masters
  • We celebrated a calm, small Christmas and were all very thankful for health and all the personal and business milestone that the year brought us.
I am definitely ready for out with the old and in with the new.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to Everyone!

Enjoy our E-card

Thursday, December 8, 2011

How to be a PR Guru from home

Since I only mention it all the time you know that the husband and I are running a small business from home.  Things have really been on the upswing here for us with SaveonBrew .  Recently I have moved to try to do some more PR work as well as tend to the day to day data.  When you basically have 3 people running a company while working full time jobs (mine is Maddy of course) everyone has to do a lot of everything.

I am constantly amazed at the Internet because of the ability to reach people.  In my learning how to do PR for the company I learned of HARO.  This is short for Help a Report Out.  This site places reporters of all mediums with sources for their articles.  Many times you submit a pitch, they ask for more information and the next thing you know you are in publications.

This happened to us today.  A couple of weeks ago, I found a pitch on HARO about small business owners.  I sent it to the hubby to complete and that evening the reporter send an online interview. Today we received notice that this was being published.

I would ramble on and on about other things that are happening for us, but I have a HUGE pile of data work that needs to be done.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Post in Pictures

They say a picture is worth 1000 words so here are some pictures showing what we have been up to.

 Maddy and her best friend have started volunteering at church.  Here is the day the got their badges.

 Maddy is helping our neighbor with her stained glass.  Maddy earns money and loves having a job.

 When my mom broke her back she was hallucinating spiders for weeks and weeks.  She had a little visitor waiting for her when she came to my house for the first time since the injury.  Don't even give me that look, my Mom gives as good as she gets.

 I got a new car.  We loved having paid for cars but it was time for a new one.  It is a Hyundai Vera Cruz.  We love it!!

 Our neighbors dogs got out and they were gone for a few days so I became the neighborhood kennel.  This is Maso and Flash.  I like them much better when I get to just play with them and send them home!
 Part of Maddy's 18th birthday was a room make over.  She got new bedding, new bath stuff and then we also re-painted her room. 

This is Maddy hard at work on Mark's computer.  He has been showing her all he does when she has problems or issues with her Ipad.  This is the first morning of trying to do it on her own.  She was a very happy and successful girl that morning.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Car Conversations today

After school work Maddy and I ran a few errands today.  The following are statements or conversations that happened during our quick outing today.

When looking for her wallet and could not find it.  "Dude I am totally freaking out right now!"

"I don't think the Hulk should be a super hero.  He did not have a whole city to watch after like Spider man does." 

"Man I really miss my Spider man T-shirt."

"Ostriches are creepy.  They just look funny.  I am glad I am not an ostrich because then I would creep myself out."

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

We survived the summer

Living in Texas the summer lasts until about now or later since we are still in the 80's this week. 

Around here we are hoping that the change of the season will continue to bring better news.  The roller coaster of summer just about wore all of us out.

Maddy had a great summer, she loved swimming for Special Olympics.  She is loving the volunteer work at the church each Sunday.  We survived the removal of her wisdom teeth and glad to have that behind us.

Mark and I are now official Guardians of Maddy and we are in the process of getting SSI for her.  We are doing all the right things for all the right reasons.  The Save on Brew business is doing well and we have had some good things happen with that lately. 

Mom is now out of her back brace and can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  She is gaining more and more independence each day. 

Wishing a quiet, calm fall and winter for all!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

One year

This Friday Oct. 7th we had a huge milestone.  Maddy has now gone one full year without a seizure.

Three Cheers for One Year!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Just like picking a puppy

Maddy recently broke up with her boyfriend.  She is happy for the freedom, but she does miss the "idea" of a boyfriend.  She has now decided that every boy in her line of sight is up for grabs.  She gives them the look over and then gives me a look or a nod of interest.

She and her best friend have been volunteering in one of the children's room at church and Maddy was most excited that a cute boy was also working in the room.  This Sunday after the service I went to get her and her from from where they volunteer. I could see both of them standing by one of the adults.  I waved and they waved back but did not come to me. 

I worked my way through the sea of children and went up to them.  The adult explained to me that Maddy wanted to meet one of the boys in the room.  After the room cleared a bit the adult called a young man over.  As he made our way towards us Maddy looked at her and said "No, No, not that one, the one over there!".  By this time the young man had joined us.  Maddy got so shy she stood behind the adult and look all googly eyed at the boy.  Finally I took the incentive and introduced everyone.  Maddy finally stated he was cute and she liked him just fine.

I could not help but laugh and once we headed out of church I told Maddy that finding a new boyfriend is not like picking out a puppy.  You don't to just walk up and choose one.  I had her best friend in stitches as we left because I made sure to point out EVERY boy and ask Maddy if maybe that one was the right boy for her.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Miss Maddy is 18

Eighteen years ago today our Miss Maddy was born.  She was born before digital cameras were around, yes she is that old!  Last night Mark and I went through our digital pictures and took a walk down memory lane.  Here are a few of my favorites of Maddy growing up.

When she was born we had no idea what life would hold for her or us.  It was certainly a different path than we ever imagined.  It has been said that special people are given special children.  I would not change Miss Maddy for the world and we both feel so blessed that she was given to us.

Friday, September 30, 2011


When Maddy and I do school work I do my best to keep it fresh and somewhat fun.  Her learning ability is pretty much capped out, but we still do a lot of reviews and new concepts do sneak in once in a while.  To start this school year out I decided to try a word game with her.  I had a deck of scrabble cards which was basically scrabble tiles on cards.

I picked out 10 cards with a nice mix of vowels and consonants. I explained that I would set the timer for 5 minutes and she was to make as many words as she could.  She would write them on a piece of paper so she could use the cards more than once.  As I am explaining this to her she wanted to know if she could have a few more cards.  I told her that she could have 5 more, but she had to pick then.  She asked for an S, and I, and  a P.  I thought the S was a great choice the P confused me.

Once she had all the tiles lined out on the table I put the time on the timer and went in the other room to do some work.  I passed through once and saw the word spider on her list.  I thought WOW!  Later that day when on the phone with the husband I told him about how well she did, she thought it was fun and how impressed I was that she spelled spider.

That night at dinner I told Maddy that I was so impressed with her word spider that I had told Mark all about it.  She looks at Mark, and just cracks up laughing.  Through the laughter I hear her tell Mark that she had cheated!

When she was doing this exercise there was a Spiderman cup on the table and that is what she used to spell spider.  She was smart enough to not spell Spiderman because I would have caught on to what she had done.

After almost 18 years, that kid can still bamboozle me!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Not enough hours in the day

It seems that lately I have been treating my blog just like I treated my diary when I had one.  Keep up for a while, drop off the face of the earth and then reappear again.

I think about writing and I intend to blog a whole lot more than I actually get around to doing it.  There just are not enough hours in the day.

Short version of recent life:

Mom- She is doing much better, moving around better and starting to go out once in a while.  She is still in her "turtle" but in 4 weeks we hope that she gets to be out of it for a while during the day.  One of the side effects of this adventure is that she has had so much lab work and so many x-rays, MRI's and Cat Scans that doctors keep finding things.  In the long run I suppose it will be good, but right now it seems like set backs.  Hopefully this will all be behind her and she can get back to her busy social life full time.

Maddy:  Wow!!  She won a ton of medals including a gold at her last swim meet.  She is done with competition for the year, but is still going to practice to improve.  Her and the boy friend are taking a break right now and we will see if they decide to give it a go again or decide to move on.  On Oct. 1st she will be 18 and we have everything in place to hopefully go to court that week to retain Guardianship of her.  It was a long process mentally and financially but we know it is the right thing to do for her.

Mark:  He is working about 28 hours a day.  It seems like that most days.  He is still trying to keep up with all his writing deadlines and get his name and talent out and about in Hollywood.  He is working full time at Save on Brew in addition to his full time day job that puts food on our table. 

Me:  I have taken over the Save on Brew Database and as I get that more under control we are working on expanding my job responsibilities.  Maddy and I have started school again for her Senior Year and it seems to be going well.

Will do my best to make more time to share funny Maddy stories.  They seem to be endless.  I have to remember to tell the "spider" story soon.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Dear Diary

June 1
  I am so excited, my Aunt arrives in town today and we will head to my family reunion for the weekend.  It will be great fun!

 June 6
  What a wonderful weekend, a good time was had by all at the reunion.  Was wonderful to visit with my aunt.  I feel this is gonna be a great summer!

June 13
  Well, today Mark and I made the decision to go ahead and retain guardianship of Maddy.  It is the right thing to do and this way we know she will always be protected.

June 14
  Big day today, we are finishing up the shopping for Maddy to go to camp next week.  I am not sure who is more excited her or us.  This is the first time she will be away at camp.  What a huge step.  Mark and I are really looking forward to the break as well.

June 21
  AM:  What an exciting morning!!  We successfully dropped Maddy off at camp and by the time we left she was already having a great time.  Now time to relax and spend time with Mark and also a little break for me as well.

PM: Wow!  Just a call from my Mom today.  She fell in the shower and hurt herself.  She says she is ok and nothing is broken she is just sore.  Her doctor is out of town so she hopes to feel better in a few days.  She has a friend who will stay the night with her tonight.

June 22
  Busy day here, we are getting ready for a series of meeting with a potential investor/partner for the business.  Three full days of meetings at my house next week.  Great opportunities await.  Looking forward to Thursday!  Mark is going to work and I get the house all to myself.  Relaxation here I come!!

June 23
 Just got a call from my Mom she is not doing any better and she does not have anyone to stay with her tonight.  She does not want to come to my house and see a dr. here.  She says she will be better, she just needs a little help during the night.  So long to my "me time".  Headed to Livingston to stay the night with her.

June 25
 AM: Uneventful time at Mom's house. She is going to see a dr. today and figure out why she is still in so much pain.  We are headed out to pick up Maddy from camp.  We can't wait to see her. 

 Mid-day:  Maddy is still beaming from camp!! What a wonderful experience for her.  She loved every minute of it.  She fully embraced all the activities and made a ton of friends.  Looking forward to an evening at home with my little family.

PM: Got a call from Livingston, the Dr. said Mom has "broken her back" and an appointment was made for Monday for her to see someone.  However, due to the meds she is taking she has started to hallucinate.  I am now on the way to pick her up and bring her home.

Late Evening:  I almost killed the woman on the way home.  She decided to share every hallucination with me for the entire hour and a half on the way home.  We are finally at my house and I hope to get her settled in bed soon.

Midnight:  The woman has gone crazy!! She is hallucinating again so off to the hospital we go.  Long day just got longer.

June 26
  It is 4 am and I just got home from the hospital.  Mother has a burst fracture in her L1 vertebra and will be admitted to the hospital.
  Went back to the hospital after a few hours of sleep to hope that the orthopedic doctor might drop by.  Mark is having to clean the house to prepare for our meetings this week and take Maddy to swim practice.

June 29
  Today is our first day of meetings with our business partners.  Since my Mother is still in the hospital and still seeing crazy things we have decided that I will sit in on the morning meetings, leave about lunch time and then go see Mom and then pick up lunch for the crew.

June 30
  Just go the news that they will release Mom to the rehab facility to get her started on physical therapy so that hopefully she can be able to be back at her house in about 3 weeks.  She has decided she wants to be back in her home town to do the rehab work.  Running to the house to drop off lunch and then meet mom at the rehab facitilty.

What a month!  Not so sure how this summer is gonna turn out after all.  The adventures of July to come soon.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Swim Tournament

Maddy had such a good time with track we decided to try swimming.  This weekend she had her first tournament in Palestine.  It was a small tournament and was great competition practice for her.  She had a whole lot of fun and received a medal in every event she competed.  She did a relay event, 50 meter free style, 25 meter free style and the 25 meter back stroke. 

The next tournament is in September and I know with more practice she has a chance at some gold.

First Silver for the Relay

 Waiting for the 50 meter freestyle

Three silvers and one event to go

End of the day, big smile and 4 medals

25 meter backstroke

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Weird and Wonderful

Video is a bit weird for me but the song is wonderful.

On a side note my Aunt Nola would have loved this song. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Treading water

I consider treading water a major upgrade right now.  For the past few weeks I felt like I was drowning in the sea of things I thought I had to so.  Thanks to a great spouse and a few days rest I am doing much better.  Following is a random update on all the things going on right now.

Our website is coming along nicely.  We have made some changes in roles, responsibilities and may have a new partner in the business soon.  Everyone involved has a long list of task, but every day our data gets better, out plan of action gets better and I truly believe we will all reap the rewards soon.

Mark and I are currently in the process of retaining guardianship of Maddy when she turns 18 in October.  For something that is the right thing to do and should be a simple process, it is actually quite complex.  We had to hire a lawyer, Maddy must have specific testing done, she must be served to show up in court.  The court and her court appointed attorney will have to make visits to our house.  We are on track to have everything ready so that once she turns 18 we should be in court the next week to become her guardians.  They require that we "bond" even though I can't believe either one of us would be a flight risk.  Once it is done we will have to register every year and keep the guardianship current so we don't have to go back to court again.  It is hard work raising a kid and keeping them safe!

My Mom is on the long road to recovery.  She is in her hometown at a rehab kinda place and is starting to get some good therapy and we can honestly say she is making progress daily now.  She still needs lots of assistance with everything, but can begin to see the ability to do a few things by her self in the next week or so.  This week we will begin to look into Home Healthcare to have that all lined up for when she and the facility where she is staying both believe she is ready to transition to home.  I hope that for Thanksgiving she will be back to her sassy self!

Maddy is on the Special Olympics swim team this year so every Sunday afternoon is busy with swim practice.  Since I have her on the team that she knows people from church and other activities the practice facility is about 40 minutes from the house.  She is enjoying the team so far, but is getting a bit nervous about the first meet that will be on July 23rd.  Hopefully she will have a good time at the swim meet and bring home the gold!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Split Second

Everything can change in just a second.  That is what has happened recently.  The week that Maddy went off to camp it was going to be Hubby time and then "me" time.  Maddy went to camp, had an amazing time and I will share that soon.  Instead of what I had planned I spent the time tending to my Mother.

The day Maddy left for camp Mom fell in the shower a split second and a hard fall later she had a burst fracture of her L1 vertebra.  Her doctor was out of town so she went to an Urgent Care place and got some meds.  The two days that were supposed to be mine were spent at her house trying to make sure she was ok.  When I was there she seemed on the mend so I went back home.  (We live just over an hour from each other.)

The day we picked Maddy up from camp we had been home a couple of hours and things had gone from bad to worse.  I had to leave and go pick Mom up and bring her home.  We got her all settled here and then it became obvious that she needed to be in the hospital.  It is then we learned about the vertebra.  After spending 36 of first 48 hours at the hospital I was finally able to begin to go home for longer periods of time.

She is now in a back brace that she will wear more hours than not and for several months.  This week we believe she will move from the hospital to a Rehab facility in her home town.  After that we hope that she can be back in her house for the rest of the recovery.

We are thankful that things are not worse and that she will heal and recover from this accident.  Once things get back to a more routine schedule I will get back to my typical Maddy stories.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Maddy is going away to camp today.  This is her first time at summer camp and since she is almost 18 you can imagine this is a big deal for everyone.  There was a time when we thought she would never be able to do something like this.

She is looking forward to it and I know she will have a fabulous time.  I loved going to camp as a kid and she will be able to do things that she can't do at home.  We are so grateful I am able to stay at home with her, but any chance she is about to do something in a safe enviroment out of the house I am thrilled!

We have the schedule for her day and they are keeping these kiddos busy.  Multiple activities during the day and themed party every night.  She is packed and ready, all we need is for the gates to open this afternoon!

Monday, June 20, 2011

For Dad

For Fathers Day this year Maddy wrote Mark a note.

For Dad

10 Things I Love about you.

1. Your Smarts
2. Your Kindess
3. You get me into new things
4. You take me places
5. You take care of me
6. You are always there for me
7. You are the Best Dad ever
8. You love me for who I am
9. You are so much fun being around with
10. You are easy to talk to

Happy Fathers Day

Love Maddy

Monday, June 13, 2011

Customer Service

Customer Service - The long lost art of a person providing a customer with assistance in a mild and friendly manner.

I had two run-ins with Customer Non-Service this week.

The first was when I needed to call AT&T about our U-verse service.  We have been AT&T customers for several years with many of their services and are happy with them, but any time there is an issue trying to speak to an actual person is like trying to break into Fort Knox.   Our TV's had been losing the signal quite often and after I would reboot the main router or the cable box they would fail on initialization.  We are a pretty tech savvy house so once I had done all that I knew to do and when reboot the router would no longer work I decided it was time to call.   The first time I called I never spoke to a person, instead a computer voice told me to please do all the steps that I had already done three times.  Then the computer voice politely informed me that the last step would fix the problem and since it would take up to 20 mins it was going to hang up the phone now.  It also informed me that a note was made and if I still had problems I could call back.  (Gee thanks).

I waited about an hour and suffered through several sighs and eye rolls from Maddy.  When I called back I was on hold about 10 minutes and enjoyed hearing all about how if I went to channel 411 it would give me helpful information regarding my tv service.  Finally a young man answered the phone and assured me that when we got off the phone my problem would be resolved.  After we did all the things I had now done 5 times, he stated that a service call would need to be scheduled.  I did not point out that my problem was not resolved, but while we were waiting on the service schedule information, he mentioned that I could go to channel 411 to get helpful information regarding my TV service I did let him know it is hard to read that information when you don't have a TV signal.   Four days later the service man showed up, rebooted the router and of course we all know what happened.....the TV's booted up just fine.

My second Customer Non-Service was with Wal-mart.  I know that is a surprise.  I had a very simple question regarding their price match policy.  (I may or may not have been asking about beer price matching for the Save on Brew business.)  A young lady answered the phone thanking me for calling Wal-mart, mumbled her name and wanted to know how she could help me.  When I said I had a question about price matching she transferred me to the service department.  The phone rang and rang and rang and rang and rang and rang.  It finally went to a voice mail box that was full so I could not have left a message even if I wanted to. 

There was an option to go back to the operator so I chose that option.  The same girl answered my call and I explained that she sent me to nowhere land and I just had a simple question regarding price matching.  She said hold please and the phone rang and rang and rang and rang and rang and rang.  It finally went to the same full voice mail box. Once again I chose to return to the operator.

The same girl picked up the phone again and when I stated again that I had a very easy question regarding the price match policy and she kept sending me to nowhere land.  She stated that she did not know about the price matching policy and that was why she was sending me to the service department.  She wanted to know if I wanted to be transferred there again.  When I stated no I did not want to be send to nowhere land again she told me to have a nice day and thanks for calling Wal-mart!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Lauged so hard my sides hurt

Had a most wonderful weekend with family.  My aunt and I went up a day early to spend the night at my cousins house on Lake LBJ.  It is a beautiful lake house and we stayed up way to late every night of the reunion.  One of the best things about my family is that we laugh, we can laugh with and at eat other and none of it is mean spirited.

We had a couple of events that had several of us in stitches and once we would get settled down something else would happen or we would have to repeat the story.  Honestly we spend a solid hour on Saturday morning laughing. 

Once we were home on Sunday my aunt was asking about our dog.  Her and her husband are currently
"dogless" but will get one in the next few months.  I had stepped into the pantry for something and as I am exiting I hear her ask the hubby a question regarding Bruiser.

Mark's answer was "No, not really very much", I quickly chimed in and said "you can be honest, he does and boy does it stink sometimes".   They both looked at me and started laughing.  She had asked does the dog bark and I heard does the dog fart.

Laughter is wonderful and when you get the opportunity to do it with 50ish members of your family it is pure joy.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Lunch with friends

Yesterday I met a couple of friends for lunch. I watched what we all ordered and it make me reflect on what I eat for lunch has changed over the years.

This year: chicken, steamed broccoli with water to drink

2-3 years ago: club sandwich, a few of the fries and a mojito (or another type of fancy drink, followed by a nap at home.)  Share a dessert

4-5 years ago:  burger, fries and a couple of beers or mixed drinks (possibly a nap after) Eat part of a dessert and take rest home for later.

6-7 years ago: appetizer, burger or sandwich with fries, couple of beers or mixed drinks and a full dessert.

The amount of food is smaller now, not nearly as exciting and yet I have the weight as if I was eating 7-10 years ago.  Dang you older, slower metabolism!!!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Family Reunion

This weekend is my family reunion and I am really looking forward to going.  There will be lots of laughter, hugs and the telling of stories.  There will be a few tears shed during the stories of those we miss.  We will be thankful for everyone who takes the time to come and spend the weekend with us.  We will try to figure out ways to get those who do not attend to come.

Every time I am at a gathering there is always talk of getting together soon, or lets do something more often.  We get so busy with our lives and what we need to do another year has slipped away from us.  Thankfully at least once a year we can all make the time and see each other.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Not just beer and BBQ

Travel safe if you traveling, enjoy the time you spend with friends and family.  Most importantly say thanks, prayers or hug a Service Person or Veteran.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Ways Maddy makes me crazy

When you have a higher functioning special needs child they are a blessing and a challenge.  Maddy has such an interesting mix of what does and does not connect in her brain.  We often have conversations regarding her speech, and also the words that she uses incorrectly.  This past week she said a sentence that made me proud and drove me crazy at the same time.

We were discussing an issue with her Ipad and after a few moments of silence she looks at me and says
"I have a theory on what the problem is, when Dad gets home I will tell him and I bet he can fixeded it".

She knows what a theory is, she has more than likely solved the issue with the Ipad, but she says "fixeded".  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

I have created a monster

It was an honest accident but I created a time monster.  If I could go back in time (no pun intended) I would have never pointed out that Justin Bieber digital watch.  However in my innocence I did point it out and Maddy bought it with her money.

We had to immediately get it up to date and on her arm.  Then....she decided to check the watch against her phone and Ipad.  Horror of horrors it did not match.  I thought she was going to have a complete meltdown.  In what seems like days and days, but in reality about 30 minutes I finally corrected the rip in the time warp. 

Last night her watch magically set itself to 12:01.  We decided I would fix it in the morning.  This morning I specifically asked her what time I needed to set it to.  Since we were by the microwave she chose that time.  I carefully set everything up and then I waited for the minute to change so I could set hers exactly.

She had a dermatologist appointment today and before we left she checked her watch, her phone and her Ipad.  They did NOT match!!  I quickly informed her that I did exactly as she directed me this morning.  In the car on the way to the Dr. office I see her checking her watch, looking at her Ipad and then re-checking her watch.  She reset the time on her Ipad and her phone to match her watch.  Then and only then was all right in the world again.

Boy and I am thankful I did not show her the second hand function! 

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Worst Calendar Ever

My Mother and I get on silly little Christmas traditions.  Some only last as long as the product is available.  Try finding fun, silly wind up toys any more.  Others happen by accident and may come and go through the years.

Two years ago on a whim I bought my Mom a desk calendar.  It was something along the lines of Sayings of Wild Women.  It was collection of sassy sayings from sassy women.  During the year the calendar provided a good bit of fun as Mom would share some of her favorite sayings with me.

This Christmas Mom got me a desk calendar for Women Who Do Too Much.  We both had high hopes for this calendar since we had so much fun with the previous one. 

The calendar has become amusing, but sadly in all the wrong ways.  This calendar has some of the worst sayings I have ever read.  At this point I can only think that some man, tucked in front of a 1980's computer was told to search for quotes and messages about working women and place them on the calendar dates.  Who ever was supposed to "check" the work was either busy that day or drunk. 

Here are a few of the inspirational messages provided to me by my calendar for Women Who Do Too Much.

*"An envious heart makes a treacherous ear." - Zora Neale Hurston
   It is good that we are all too busy to be envious, isn't it?

*Women Who Do Too Much tend to be very controlling.  Who knows which came first-our buysness or our need to control?  It doesn't matter.  Both will push others away and make our lives more difficult in the process-not a pretty picture.

*Our bodies,our clothes. Our clothes, our bodies. It seems women are always under a microscope.  Even if others placed us there, have we stayed there longer than we needed to?

* Often we ask those we love to make tremendous sacrifices for our work.  We become unfeeling and uncaring in the process.  Only work matters.  Women who are addicted to homemaking are just as consumed as those addicted to their businesses.  And this attachment can be an escape from intimacy.

*Is pouting on of our inalienable rights?  It should be.  Sometimes we just need to hold on to our negative feelings for a while.  It's best to warn others when we have that need.

*We Women Who Do Too Much are not "bad" people.  We are usually good people-sometimes we just do some pretty bad things to ourselves and others.

Monday, May 16, 2011


For 8 weeks Maddy attended a bible study each Tuesday evening at our Church.  The class was designed specially for special needs kiddos and was a nice basic look at the tenants of faith and the sacraments.  The last class saw 4 students receive the sacrament of Baptism.  Maddy was one of those four students. 

This past Sunday during a special service for the Special Needs population the bible study class was Confirmed.  It was such a blessing to see these young men and women be able to complete the bible study and receive Confirmation.

Since my Mom was so kind and generous to buy Maddy's prom dress this year, I was able to spend money on getting her a new dress for Confirmation.  

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mothers Day Note

When I got out of bed yesterday Maddy gave me a big hug to say Happy Mothers Day and handed me a card/note she had written for me.  I am going to share the note with you exactly how it is written and spaced so you can enjoy it as well.

I am so proud That you are my mom and I would never trade you for anyother mom Because I Think you are The #1 mom in The whole world and I thank you for everything you do for me and I Love You just the way you are and I Don't care what People say about you Because I know That it is not true at all  Love MADDY

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Wishing all a wonderful Mother's Day!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Standardized Testing

I do not agree with the way the Texas school system chooses to test special needs children. They are trying to force squares into round holes. They have lost the flexibility or desire to adapt testing to get the best results and knowledge assessment from these kids.

Since Maddy is home schooled we are not bound to the Texas school system requirements. Most children in our state have been taking the TAKS exam this week. In some cases this will determine if a Diploma is awarded. We know 100% that if Maddy had stayed in the public school system she would not have received a Diploma. She would have received a Certificate of Completion. Since she would not be able to pass the TAKS exam and could not take certain classes she would not qualify for a Diploma. She will not need a Diploma and I can easily print up a Home School Diploma that will mean more to her than a school issued piece of paper.

Having said all of that, there is a need to know where she is academically and what areas I can improve on. I know that with the business and shifting the focus to life skills, the academics have take a back seat. I am going to work on getting academics back into our daily routine. We don't know how much more academically she can advance, but the need is still there to review and reinforce the concepts she has.

This week I have printed out the 3rd grade Math and the 5th grade reading released TAKS exam for Maddy. I am being a bit ambitious with the 5th grade reading, but I think she can handle it.

I am not really looking for the "correct" answer in all cases. With the Math exam I am looking at her thought process. Why did she choose the answer and does it make sense. She got 18/38 correct but many that she missed had logical answers. Some of the questions were on concepts we have never covered and she made good guesses that showed she attempted to reason out the answer.

Before we review the results I will go back and give her partial credit for these attempts. I feel this will be a better representation of her skill set.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Still around

Just a quick update. We are still alive and kicking. However it is the to-do list that is doing the kicking. Kicking my arse.

We are good, Maddy is almost done with bible study and will be baptized and confirmed soon. In June she will start up Special Olympics swimming. We volunteered for the Special Olympic fundraiser golf tournament. Thanks to Tommy Bahamas and the Houston Astros for putting on a great event for the kiddos.

Rumor has it that there is an important wedding today. My anniversary is not till August so I guess someone got the dates mixed up!

Happy weekend all and I promise to update more often.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

Friday, April 15, 2011

When you start to see hard work pay off

I might have mentioned once or 10 times that the hubby and I have a business or two.  The main reason for us to think outside of the box is that we want to make sure that Maddy is well cared for once we are gone.  We need to know that she will have the money that she needs to be safe and loved her entire life.

The hubby works a full time job that pays the bills and gives me the ability to stay at home full time.  We are thankful every day for this, but it is not enough for the future.  The screen writing business is going well, but is most days an exercise in frustration for him.   When the idea came about to try to wrangle all the beer data on the web to create a cheap beer website we sat down, thought it through and moved forward.

Partners were secured, and the work began.  Thousands of dollars and hours were spend to figure out how it could work, how could it be user friendly and how it could be marketed.  Once we did solve the data puzzle then we had to set about gathering the information and decided how it could be entered into a website formula.  Then the beers had to be added and let me tell you there is a heck of a lot of beer out there.

Daily we work on the site, improve it, market it, work on advertisers and potential partners.  This morning we were mentioned in Technorati.  It is nice to see we are picking up a little buzz on the internet.

If you ever hear anyone say, wow those Save on Brew people are so lucky, what a great idea, I should have thought of that.  Smile and know that like most "overnight" successes we worked our butts off for a few years!

Monday, April 11, 2011

From Track to Prom all in one day

Saturday was a very busy day in my house.  Maddy and I were out the door at 7:00 to head out of town for her Spring Games track meet.  It was hot and very windy where we were.  They finally advised everyone to remove their tents for shade as the wind was to strong and the tents were becoming a hazard.  So we both got to enjoy a little bit of wind and sun burn from the day.

Maddy's first event was the 100 meter run and she placed second.  During the parade and opening ceremonies one of the girls on the Woodlands Shooting Stars received the female athlete of the year award.  In the afternoon Maddy had the softball throw.  She placed 4th and considering she was hot, tired, wanted to go home and get ready for the prom, and throwing into 30ish mph winds, that was not a bad attempt. 

Ready to run

Medal Ceremony from 100 meter dash

Before the Parade and Opening Ceremonies

Track award ceremony

We finished up at the track meet and rushed back home to get ready for Prom.  We were very quick and successful and got her ready in 45 minutes.  The hubby took pictures of Maddy and then we were off to the boyfriend's house.  We took pictures there and then they were off to An Enchanted Evening.  They had a Cinderella style horse drawn carriage for all the kids to take a ride in.  Maddy was brought home around 10:00. 

Maddy and the Boyfriend!

The day was hectic but it was a great day for her!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Back and running at full speed

We had a lovely time in Vegas and did more than our fair share of helping their economy. We stayed at the Palazzo and due to an issue with our room we upgraded to a suite on the 47th floor. It was fun to see how the fancy people travel. There was even an elliptical machine with its own little workout room in the suite. The view from the room was just amazing!

The hotel itself was just as impressive as the other hotels in Vegas.

There was a nice mix of "me" time while Mark was doing his work thing and a whole lot of "we" time.  Things went great here at the house while we were gone and I came home to a girl all ready for the prom.  Her and my Mom took care of all the necessities and she is ready for Saturday.

Saturday will be a whirlwind since she has an out of town track meet in the morning and then prom that evening.  I will do my best to update with track and prom photos on Sunday or Monday.