“When the cold comes to New England it arrives in sheets of sleet and ice. In December, the wind wraps itself around bare trees and twists in between husbands and wives asleep in their beds. It shakes the shingles from the roofs and sifts through cracks in the plaster. The only green things left are the holly bushes and the old boxwood hedges in the village, and these are often painted white with snow. Chipmunks and weasels come to nest in basements and barns; owls find their way into attics. At night,the dark is blue and bluer still, as sapphire of night.”
Alice Hoffman, Here on Earth

Monday, April 14, 2014

Four Neckties

Ru: "Guess what, Mom. You can tell how prideful a guy that I am pretending to be is, based on how many neckties he wears."

(Pause for me to absorb this new data....and count his play silk neckties.)

This particular guy was a four necktie humdinger. ;)

Love it when my kids make me smile, double-take and appreciate the valuable role that play has in understanding and digesting the world. No short-cuts y'all.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Fiber Arts Surprise

Love it when my kids surprise and amaze me.

I tried to teach Ru to finger-knit a while ago but I wasn't doing something right and it kept falling apart so we ditched it.

That was months ago....then yesterday, he comes and finds me and says, "Hey Mom! Look what I figured out!" And there he was....finger-knitting...all by himself!

He has been knitting madly and at last count I think he'd made something like four or five scarves. Time to find some projects he can make and stash in our gift box out of finger-knitting strands.


Monday, March 31, 2014

Surviving Lead Contamination

Lead poisoning is still with us.

I just took Pom in for a repeat test and his numbers are still elevated. His initial number was 13.5 (5 or below is acceptable) and then second test had him at 12 and now we are down to the third test and he's at 11. You might remember this short post back in August when I leaked that our old house, rehab project had brought lead into our life. We have old paint and that's our source, mainly through dust. I had a freak out phase but after a while of grappling I am feeling more confident and steady about the whole topic. I thought it was time to share a little more about it since its become one of the big things that I care about in the last year and I think what I found out might help some other parent out there.

The good thing is, that his contamination is steadily dropping, its so scary and annoying to have this crazy thing hanging over you. I had a short stage this past fall when I was having trouble sleeping at night because of all the terrifying stuff I had read about lead and its effects on the body. I am so relieved to tell you that I quickly realized that approach was helping nobody and focused on reading what helps, what heals and sometimes just on distraction. Not sleeping does not help the body heal from lead. That I can tell you.

I am sharing a list of stuff we have tried any or all of which may have helped. I am one of those, Try All The Things!!!! types of people.  

Here's what we've done:

  • Clove oil on the skin
  • Vitamin D oil on the skin
  • Lots of calcium and iron in the diet
  • Iron drops by mouth
  • Re-painting as many of the walls as possible
  • Chewable Vitamin C by mouth
  • Healing prayer (no, really!)
  • Added more garlic and cilantro to our diet
  • Did Epsom Salt baths (meant to try clay baths but never got around to it)
There is also a hopeful study published a few years ago, about new research showing lead poisoning is not quite as irreversible as once thought. I was really excited to see that kind of information coming out. 

I want to encourage scared parents out there that you can remove lead from the body, there are things you can try, its not a death sentence for the brain, nutrition helps, you're not bad, your kid isn't doomed and nobody hates you. Having lead poisoning is kind of a closet issue, like having bed bugs or something. People think certain things about "the type of person" who deals  with lead poisoning.

Truth: People from all walks of life can have lead toxicity.
Truth: It means nothing about your parenting or your ultimate health as a family.
Truth: You can heal your child.
Truth: Lead can be in your kid and not cause brain damage.

Remember that there was a whole generation before us who used lead paints with impunity and they did not all end up brain damaged and stunted. Doctors who are well meaning can scare the living daylights out of parents. Not everyone has the money or the need to completely rip the house apart for lead remediation, we don't. Covering up the lead paint is helpful and its worth doing.

The big take-away is, hang in there!