Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Why I Hate Dealing With Doctors, Part 3

I've been reading How Doctors Think, thanks to a recommendation from Renee. It is so enlightening! The theme of the book is the mistakes doctors make when they fall into mental traps, making snap judgments to drawing premature conclusions. Cognitive errors happen when a doctor isn't focused on their patient.
About a month ago, I visited a new doctor. In telling her my issues, specifically adrenal fatigue, she leaned back in her chair and sighed: "Adrenal fatigue is the diagnosis du jour. Most people that think they have it, really don't." Then she didn't ask me any more about it.
(Quick lesson: When your thyroid is taxed, your adrenal gland takes over. Eventually, if untreated, your adrenal gland will get taxed as well, resulting in adrenal fatigue.)
Knowing that I have been taking Armour Thyroid for quite awhile, she asked how long I had taken Synthroid. (Most people start with Synthroid, then switch to Armour when it isn't working.) I told her I never took Syntroid. As soon as I knew I was hypothyroid, I requested Armour. Again, she leaned back in her chair and sighed. Then she went on to teach me a lesson:
"Doctors are not WalMart. You don't go in and tell a doctor what you want. If you had an accountant taking care of your budget, and you repeatedly told him that you wanted him to do it a certain way, he'd eventually quit."

Now, I wanted to say: This accountant works for me, right? I hired him to do a job for me, so it's perfectly reasonable that he should do the job how I want him to do it. Afterall, it's my money he's handling.

I didn't say that though. I shut down mentally while she labeled me "noncompliant". I then paid $150 for that disappointment and walked out trying desperately not to cry until I got to the car.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The 50,000 Hits Winner

The Big 50,000 Hits Giveaway has ended and we have a winner!
The winner is:
Please send me your mailing address and I'll ship your prizes right away. Congrats Crystal!


Recently, Kyle and I have both had a nasty cough. One of those chesty coughs that comes from having too much crud in your lungs. (That is as nice as I could possibly say it.) I turn to Fenugreek seeds as one of the strongest expectorants. I crush the seeds in my coffee grinder that is only used for herbs and encapsulate the Fenugreek. I take 2 capsules three times a day.
I recently learned that Fenugreek is also great for dissolving cholesterol. If you have high cholesterol, try it and let me know what results you have.

ETA: Faith pointed out that I failed to mention another important function of Fenugreek. It's great for stimulating milk production in lactating mothers. (Thanks Faith!)

Caution: Pregnant women should not take Fenugreek.

Friday, September 26, 2008

People Say the Darndest Things

Someone recently asked: With your transracial family, what kind of comments do you have to deal with?
The truth is, we almost never get racial comments. At least not bad ones. But last week when the four big kids were at a library event, Elena mentioned something about her sister. The adult she was talking to asked who her sister was. When Elena pointed to Maya, the lady said: She can't be your sister, she's black!
We all got a big kick out of that one. Elena thought it would be funny next time to reply: "Haven't you ever heard of adoption?" We thought it might be better to say something more gracious, though.

When we are all out together, a lot of people ask if I run an in-home daycare. The kids think it's really funny.

Most of the time, people just say silly things. But every once in awhile, people really do surprise me and say something truly shocking.

When we put in a lot of landscaping recently, someone said: "Now it's looks like white people live here!" Um, we were a bit dumbfounded by that one. Did she know she said that aloud?!?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Date Nights

This past weekend, Kyle asked my mom to babysit so we could go to Oktoberfest for the evening. We kissed everyone good-bye (and that takes a while!) and headed out the door. When we arrived, the parking garage was blocked off. All the spots were taken. That was the only free parking area. All the rest were $10. Compared to free, we weren't too excited about spending $10. So we kept trying to find another parking spot, to no avail.

We bailed and went out to eat instead.

I'm curious: What do you and your honey enjoy doing for a date?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Miracle of Miracles

Lydia is potty-trained! My goodness, I thought it would never happen! I was determined to wait until she was ready, convinced that she would potty train quickly that way. Well, after waiting and waiting and waiting. . . it worked!
Three months ago, Lydia and I had this conversation:

Lydia: (said with eyes wide and eyebrows raised) I get a jelly bean when I pee in the potty??
Me: Yes!
Lydia: And I get TWO jelly beans when I poop in the potty?
Me: YES! (Huge smile on my face)
Lydia: (said with a perfectly straight face) I don't want to sit on the potty.
Me: {{eyeroll}}

A week ago, we ran out of diapers. When it was time for me to put on Lydia's first diaper of the day, I said: We're out of diapers. Today you're wearing panties.
And she has yet to need anything else.


Now I'm going to take the money I'm saving on diapers and go to Hobby Lobby.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Quick Note

Regarding the 50,000 Hit Giveaway: Now that 50,000 hits has come and gone (see bottom of left sidebar), I'll announce the winner as soon as it hits 51,000. Based on averages, that will be a week from now.

*Anonymous comments will not be entered to win. If you've left an anonymous comment, you might want to try again.


One of my favorite herbs is Passion Flower. It's a relaxant. Take it when you need to wind down. Give it to your kids when they are sick and cranky and need to sleep. Just brew some up as a tea and add a bit of honey. Yum! And you'll feel warm and fuzzy in no time.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Let's Talk

I must say I was really surprised by the results of my recent survey. 80% of you guys homeschool?! 75% of you have adopted or want to adopt?! The majority of you have at least 5 kids?! Good grief! That's a lot of kids! (That's my little joke. Story to follow.)
We have a lot more in common than I would have imagined. I thought there were more of you that came here to argue with me. (And I'm not complaining; I enjoy controversy.)

Guess who??

There have been lots of times in conversation with other moms when someone will mention a woman they know who has "a bunch of kids" (more than 4 and typically less than 8). I always say, with an incredulous look: "Six kids! Good grief! That's a lot of kids!" (Get it? Get it?? lol) )
So, now that I know how likeminded you all are, you may see a change in my blog. But then again, you might not. ;)

Friday, September 19, 2008

There's a Giveway A-Comin'!

As soon as my blog counter hits 50,000, a giveaway will commence. Leave a comment telling me how you found Clark Chatter and you'll be entered into the giveaway! I'm not going to tell you exactly what the prize is, but it will include a variety of fun things:

something from Starbucks
scrapbooking material
a gift card
and more!

Everyone who leaves a comment will be entered to win!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Park Days

Now that the weather has gotten cooler, we've been spending as much time outdoors as possible. This is our slow time of schooling. I read our Bible study while we eat breakfast, and my only other goal is to get phonics done. Everything else is gravy. 1st priority is to enjoy this weather while it lasts!
While I was doing phonics with Maya and Elena, Daniel found a pair of scissors and snipped a big chunk out of his shirt. I wasn't thrilled. I told him he had to wear the shirt all day, so that Daddy could see it when he got home. (Then Daddy had a little talk with him.)
Luckily, we were the only ones at the park. Otherwise, I would have been embarrassed, thus punishing me and not Daniel, who didn't mind at all.

Lydia is such a good mommy. She pushed her pet horse, Clifford, for 10 full minutes. The poor horse was dizzy at the end of the ride.

Tonight, we had a picnic dinner in the park when Kyle got home. I'm kicking myself for not taking my camera. Kyle was racing the kids on their scooters. Have you ever seen a grown man on a little Razor? Well, this particular grown man was FAST!
I just love this time of year!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

How Old Is He Anyway?


A 30 year old male sex offender posed as a 12 year old boy and attended public schools in Arizona. He now pleads guilty for seven criminal charges related to the con he played for 2 years.
Nobody can protect your children like you can.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Don't Say That!!

I recently "ran into" a guy I graduated high school with on Facebook. He has three beautiful kids now. On his daily status update he said:
I'm so thankful for that vasectomy I had 2 years ago. The kids were psycho at breakfast!
As I read his comment, my shoulders slouched and my countenance went south. What a sad thing to say! I couldn't get it out of my head all that day.
Now, I should give you some history. I attended a Christian private school for jr. high and high school. Everybody in my graduating class was a believer. This sterile classmate of mine still claims to be a Christian. And I don't doubt at all that he is because sadly, this kind of comment is socially acceptable even in churches.
If we as Christians believe God's Word that
Sons are a heritage from the LORD,
children a reward from him
(Psalm 127:3)
then why on earth do we think it's ok to joke about what a burden they are??
Now, more than just worldly deception was on my mind when I read his statement. I immediately thought back to 2002, when Elena was 2 and Chloe was 6 months old. Kyle and I were sitting in the office of Dr. Urologist, discussing a vasectomy for Kyle. We both wanted this.
We knew we wanted to adopt and after having two children 18 months apart, we wanted to make sure that never happened again.
Imagining the joy we would have missed makes me absolutely sick to my stomach.

Kyle and I are both so very thankful that we didn't go through with it.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Earlier this week, we lost a chicken. Chicken Jane died an early death. It was very sad. Kyle and I were really nervous about telling the kids. Maya especially takes death very hard, regardless of her relationship with the deceased. She's just very compassionate.
So, sat the kids down and said: We only have 5 chickens now. Chicken Jane died last night.
Their response: "Oh man! So, are we getting a new chicken now?"
A compassionate bunch, my kids.

So, yesterday, I drove an hour to the boonies to pick up 7 young hens. Buff Rocks. So, now we have an even dozen.
We're keeping the chicks in the run, closed off from the coop, until they are big enough to stand up for themselves.
Afterall, we have 5 older hens who can hardly wait to "get to know" their new sisters. It was funny to see how they responded to the newcomers. They clucked at them, then looked at me asking for an explanation. I told them: Produce or you'll be replaced, girls! We want lots of eggs and we expect you to earn your keep!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Any Photographers Out There??

I need help. The truth is: I shoot in auto mode most of the time. And that doesn't work too well when you're doing transracial photography. See those cute kids? The truth is, you can only see three of them, right? And even Elena is blurry. I need help! I desperately want a picture of all my kids, but I've learned that outdoor photos are best for that and even then the lighting has to be just right.
When the sun is behind the kids, you can't see my Africans at all. When the sun is in front of the kids, my Whities look like ghosts! What's a mom to do?
It's easy to take individual pictures of the kids. But getting them all in one shot is quite a challenge! We haven't had a family photo taken since the adoption! Gasp!!

Look at this goof! She doesn't care about my photography struggles. She laughs in the face of my greenness. How insensitive! How callous! How rude!
(And it's not fair that she can be so cute and so rude at the same time!)

C'mon, my photo-loving friends! I know you're out there. Help me!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What We've Been Doing

This summer, I created a predictable weekly schedule so I wouldn't have to waste too much brain power figuring out what to do for fun.
Every Monday, we went to an indoor playground (usually McDonald's) to play with friends. Tuesdays were Library days. Wednesdays were home days. (Hey, Mama needs a break sometimes.) Thursdays were water days. We hit the Splash Park or went swimming. Fridays we always had a playdate.
We spend a lot of time at the Splash Park in the summer time. Well, at the end of summer, I found a new place- this Fountain Park. The water pops up in a rhythmic pattern. Very fun!

The kids would run into the middle, then race back out to try to beat the sprays."Look at those crazies! They think they're not gonna get wet? Watch this!"
The boys get caught as big sprays shoot up all around them. Neener, neener, neener! Elena saw that coming.
What Elena doesn't know is: Daniel got exactly what he wanted. A big spray in the face. He loves it!
Lydia just marched around the outside edge of the fountain. She's so predictable. Not a risk taker, that one.
Who knew that H20 could be so much fun?! My kids did.