Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy 2011

I wish you all
a very happy

Let´s leave 2010 behind us,
except for the lessons we have learned.

Let´s keep in close touch
with our self respect
and respect for others
regardless if others respect us.

Let´s approach the world in a positive way

Let´s be true friends.

Happy 2011.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Approaching 2011

Slowly we're approaching 2011.

Today we slept in, that means, the girls and I.
Their autistic brother went with his dad to the hospital to get some bloodworks done.

Last week I went with him to a, for him, new doctor of internal meds to get some things seen into. I'm curious what all the examinations will show.
I've been asking for this for many years and each and every psychiatrist thought it unnecessary, until the new one who agreed with me the very first meeting.

It's great to communicate with someone who is less ego and more directed to the patiënt.
My sons meds will be reviewed after the data are in, and we're all happy with that.

I'm glad my son doesn't mind to have his bloodworks done. No phantasies about needles finding their way in the body. LOL!

By the time they came back we were walking around and talking girly things.
Maybe we should take a whole day like that and put green and brown masks on each other's faces.

I'm dealing with the new/old diabetes meds myself as expected.
I've got the same headache as in the past, the same other side effects. I can deal with them.
During the day I measured my bloodglucose and even the results were as I expected.

I'm glad I feel so much better than last week and my lungs are so much friendlier. I can breathe fully again.

In the evening my second son came for a short visit to tell about photographing a wedding anniversary. Boy, he looked nice in his white shirt with black sweater.
Handsome guy!!!

We've been making a few plans for the change of years.
All will be either at home or visiting just before midnight, so we'll be all together.

To me it says something that my sons seek home at events like that.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Our Count Down - 15 - not again!

I was right the last time I wrote in this series.

Today I saw the letter that is supposed to go to court: they want to end the guardianship.
Mentioned is the fact that the girls do well, mentioned too is that we're not cooperating.

So that's precisely what I sensed in that guy: the lack of really understanding what's going on and interpreting things in a negative way.
I'm so tired of it all.
Is this a special breed of people?

They are absoluty paranoid in the way they deal with people.

I said that we didn't feel at ease with the guy, that we were not able to establish contact well enough compared to how we have contact with other people.
That's not resistance!!

When I feel resistance I'm bloody well capable of telling them not to interfere with our lives, or to keep my mouth shut.

I kept on talking and talking to come across, because I sensed he didn't get it.

I sensed well.

It makes me so mad that those people are able to turn everything around and paint everything black.

Because he also made a huge mistake in his letter I wrote him a non official reaction.
If he's wise he writes his letter again, so he won't be confronted in court with paperwork that makes clear they're not able to transfer cases well, or understand transferral of cases, and they're not able to listen.
I'm glad I have that part of the whole toodoo on paper in a good way.

It's absolutely ridiculous!

We got guardianship because of stupidities.
We told the court we would cooperate and we did.
We even tried to get more appointments in less time.

I wrote two letters, each one about an important issue, to speed up the process.

But I can't and won't create problems to enable them to make a treatment plan.

I think that's why they say we won't cooperate: they have no treatment plan at all.

The guy went to school and there it became clear I was right. My girls are doing OK.
In between it was said that some classmates had not so much contact with one of the girls, and ofcourse that's presented in that letter too.
So next week, when the school's open, I'll ask a written statement about that with answers on questions like: was that a problem, etc etc.

I told the guy that under normal circumstances letters with huge mistakes are rewritten. If he does, I think we can deal with it, but if he doesn't I think we need to have a lawyer again. A better one than before.
I fear the girls won't be able to go on student exchange in that case.
We don't have a moneytree.

How on earth are these people able to make everything into a huge problem?
The matter could be settled so easy.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Change of diabetes medication

It was time to order a new set of meds, so I mailed my doctor for prescriptions.
To my surprise I got a call.

In the past I tried quite some meds against diabetes and ended with Avandamet.
It was the only medication that didn't give me a continous headache, nausea, dizziness and other unwanted problems.
In fact I experienced no problems using it.

Research however has shown that heartproblems and oedema can cause tremendous problems and the European union pulled the stuff from the market.

Thank you!

I'm quite capable to make my own decisions and i think it's up to make to take a risk.
It's about quality of life, and I'd rather have a better quality of life at the cost of a few years.

So tomorrow I'll start again with the old meds, which were not sufficient to control the diabetes in the past.
Combining it with insulin or using insulin only is not a real option as I have a metabolic disease which make insulin a greater risk than avandamet is.

I have the opportunity to monitor my own glucose levels, so I know what's going on.

I also know I'll have the runs all the time, which is a wellknown side effect, so I need a box of "runstoppers" in my bag wherever I go.
I also need to be far more careful with planning my meals. So that flexibility is lost too.
And I need to level and spread my energy far more.

It was not without a good reason that we changed medication in the past, so I feel I'm back again to a situation that was unwanted.


Sunday, December 26, 2010

Second christmasday 2010 - online auction

Isn't it great to wake up in a white world again?

Today we went to the oldest son for dinner.
The girls went early because they wanted to assist him.

Because of my lungproblems it was decided to ask a friend to drive us, and he gladly did.
Otherwise we would have to walk about 30 minutes, then wait for the bus and even be uncertain about being able to go back.
By car it's not even 15 minutes from door to door.

I really enjoyed the snow everywhere. All trees and shrubs carry a hat of about 40 cm of snow.

We had a gourmet dinner. It was delicious.
A few boys took it upon them to bake the meat and they did very well.
I felt so proud to sit between these young people who really enjoyed it to make others happy.

After that we enjoyed opening our presents.
It had been a huge toodoo to get something nice for everyone, because of the snow.
But everyone was content.

I didn't expect much and that turned out to be OK, because I got an alarmclock (without radio....) and a small statue that was a perfect copy of one that's already sitting on a shelf in the livingroom, for everyone to see.
It's this one:

Sorry for the bad quality of the merged picture.

The statue is a few cm's high, from the series Kabouke.
It comes with a box.
Inside the box the statue is kept in a cotton bag, under foam.
There's also a leaflet in it with information about the collection.

It's a collector's item.

I'm willing to sell it to the highest bidder, and the money will be used for autism.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010!

I want to wish you all a merry christmas.

Ofcourse I can go and find many wonderful quotes to say the most noble thoughts.
But I can also say what's on my mind this day and leave it up to you to create a thougth out of it all.

Christmas is to me integrity in dealing with other people and certainly in dealing with oneself.
We've met many people the past year who fool themselves with wonderful intentions behind their actions.
They assume that when the result is right the means don't matter.
It has been hard to be the subject of those people, because breaking up a family seems to be quite normal for them, and they're able to use unlawful methods under the eyes of the law.

Maybe the message of christmas will reach them this year.
It's about being a family, even during the worst hours of cold and pain.

It's unbelievable that in this society family is not important anymore for the government.
Fugitives are not welcome anymore, and the true story of this past week has moved me deeply.

A man and a women fled their country independently.
They met each other in this area and fell in love.
Since then they've been a couple and last week a lovely baby was born.

During the time they went to court to become official inhabitants of the country, but they were refused.
They appealed and were refused again.
Then they filed another courtcase.

When the father went to the council to report the birth of his child he was arrested.
Someone saw the star of christmas and made him go to his wife and child so they could spend christmas together. After that they will be send away.

My heart bleeds for them.

Merry christmas

Friday, December 24, 2010

Almost christmas

Last night it snowed another 15 cm's and it looks like it's going to snow again within an hour.
Never ever have we had so much snow.
In part of the country people just can't travel.

It's a problem to leave the neighbourhood here, so getting the groceries in is no fun at all.
Because my lungs are still not OK, I try to keep quiet. Yesterday set me back a great lot.
But I got the presents in.

Just a few moments ago the father of the children discovered it's the 24th not the 25th.
He thought he had still a complete day to get all his things done. Haha!
Without much words he rushed off.

One of the girls said Santa asked her to ask me what I would like to have for christmas. We both sat down and went to:
We saw a lovely canvas with 6 stockings. One can order names on those stockings.
And I also saw very nice pendants with a family on it. I would love to have one with only a mother and two children. I would engrave the names of my diseased children at the back.
Surfing through the site we found out that a whole section offers presents for whole families. Oh, do I love that train music box!

I'm now off to make the house smell after cinnamon. I just put some cinnamon sticks in water and bring it to the boil and the vapours go through the whole house.

Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Finally good assessment

Today I finally went with my autistic son to the doc of internal medicine.

After doctors telling me for so many years there's no problem and when he got obese that the problem would solve itself, we had a psychiatrist who said he would refer us.
He never did. We remembered him a lot of time about his promiss to realise a referral, and over and over again he said he would, but he never did.

Then my son was old enough to leave there and care was transferred to another psychiatrist.
I asked him to arrange a referral, and he immediately did.
We talked about the issue and I said I also wanted a scan of my son't brains, to exclude or signal any problems in the pituitary and/or hypothalamic area.

Today we had to struggle our way through the snow.
It felt like being on a polar expedition.
We were so happy to arrive at the busstation.
The roads were white and dangerous, so it took half an hour longer to reach our destination.

My son was lucky to get such nice doctors.
He got a very thorough examination, they took their time to make a good anamnesis, and they even took the time for a case conference before they sat down and unfolded their plans.

Bloodwork, mainly to exclude some rare but serious diseases.
Next week a test to establish or exclude Cushing disease.
An MRI to establish or to exclude pituitary and/or hypothalamic problems.
Under normal circumstances the doc did that last, but in this case she wants it done asap

After that a meeting to see what is found.

Finally something contructive is done!!

Outside the hospital it was very cold and we waited 40 minutes for a bus that never arrived, then we took another one to town and got a good bus home.
Trains had come to a stop.

When I came home I was completely exhausted.
Next monday my own doc is working again and I'll be his first patient. I can hardly keep those lungproblems under control at the moment. Waiting for such a long time in the cold was not good.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Today we went to hospital because both my autistic son and I needed an x-ray.
We had to walk through the neighbourhood, because of the enormous amount of snow.
When we arrived at the main road I was surprised it was in such a bad state. Still snow on it.

When we arrived at the hospital we found the same situation.

We had to wait a little bit, but that didn't matter.

At a certain moment I turned my head and saw two of our best friends walk in.
So we had a good time talking and now and then someone was called in for photos.
People were often called back, but they kept my son in his little room. Maybe it took him too much time to dress and undress.

I had to come back twice!
When my friend was supposed to go in the equipment broke down.

My autistic son went with his father to town to get his new ID and I stayed there.
The repairman arrived soon after that and then it was my friend's turn to get her x-rays.

When we came outside it was snowing again.
But I was lucky to be invited to go home with car.

What a luxury!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Not enough secret santas for families with autism

I worked very hard to get it all arranged well, but instead of having too many santas, which happened in the past, I have now a shortage of secret santas.

Families with autism live a difficult life.
Each day is a challendge.
Each time they have to deal with school or caretakers, or therapists, they have to stand up to get the best there is.

The brothers and sisters of a child with autism are part-time caretakers too.
Not many people realise how much experience they gain from dealing with autism.
They really deserve something extras.

In the past 25 years I've been dealing with autism I've seen many families struggling with additional costs.
My son, for instance, used his chair very intensive. At the height of his restlessness he needed two chairs a month.
I became so experienced in repairing wooden chairs, you don't want to know.
Noe he's got a very good chair from an office. They threw it away because they wanted the most modern look. And they gladly donated it to him.
Pity the other chairs were already gone to the waste installation.

Additional costs are ofcourse for therapy, extra support but also for eating habits.
Because of the hypersensitivity some children won't eat food with rough texture, or anything salty. Or they eat the same food for many many months, because it gived them a feeling of safety.

And because these children and youngsters have a limited area of interests extra costs are always present.
Take for instance an autistic child who uses a certain game at the computer. He will get better and better and eventually the cheap games are too easy. Or he needs a paid subscription.

With moms all over the world we have talked about this subject very often.
Especially when the children are young a mom wants to give full attention and because she rather prevents a meltdown than allow it to develop into a real problem, she often has to leave chores, with sometimes devastating results.
One of the moms was putting the laundry in the machine while she was preparing to leave to do some groceries. Her son was putting on his coat. And the toodler was sitting beside her. Quite iddylic, until the autistic boy started to scream because the sleeve of his coat was turned inside out.
In her hurry she realised she couldn't take the bag with her, and she couldn't leave it on the floor with the toodler, so she put it on the laundry machine.
When she hurried away it fell in the machine (she had a top door one).
She took care of her son and when he was quiet she went upstairs to get the toddler. In her hurry she switched on the machine adn by the time she realised she missed her bag it was soaked wet.

My own son has the habit of losing all the things he has with him. Including keys and ID.
Getting a new ID costs the normal prize and a fine of 28 euros.

I don't think the secret santas should financially jump in forever or something like that.
These are just examples of how life has it's surprises at times.

A secret santa can bring a smile with a few bars of chocolate, with a piece of special soap, with coupons, with a totebag filled with cookies.

Being a secret santa means being nice for someone else without expecting anything back.

Maybe you can help me out to get enough secret santas.
Maybe a package won't be there in time, but a nice mail stating something is on it's way is special enough.

When you have something special to share, maybe your old games or books, maybe beads for girls or a nice bracelet for mom and a pen for dad, comment here and I'll get matters sorted as soon as possible.

We all can do with a secret santa, but I think that families with autism should find happiness and a nright day.

Monday, December 20, 2010

He and the dentist

My autistic son had an appointemtn this morning with the dentist.
He wasn't looking forward to it and he was tryng to get the appointment cancelled. I told him that the costs are now insured and not anymore after january 1 and so I wanted him to pay the costs himself when he missed this appointment.
He didn't say much, but yesterday evening he asked who was coming with him.

His father couldn't go to work because of the trafficproblems and he said he'd go with him.

This morning I expected the usual todoo when he has to leave, but I think he was distracted by the snow, because they went without too much fuzz.

An hour later they came home.

Everything went well. All he had was a stiff jaw and the orders not to eat for an hour.

He asked if he was allowed a cola and as a joke I told him that he couldn't drink a cola for a year. I'm not at all in favor of giving sweets or softdrinks as a compliment.
He took some water and sat down, talking about what had happened.
It sure had made an impression because he told the same facts over and over again.

Later in the day he started to doubt my statement about cola and he decided it had been a good joke.

I'm glad he shows signs of growing up and independence.
Wouldn't it be great whe he was less of a problem for himself?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Worst winterweather ever. I love it.

Thanks for asking how my lungs are doing.
I'm not feeling well at all, and the meds can barely deal with the problems.
I can't lay down, because I can't breathe and it takes an hour or even more to get on top of the shortness of breath.

Let's say I found out that one can spend a night at CityVille, one of the games on facebook, in the best position to breathe.

My doc is on vacation. I tried to call him at his own home, for once in a lifetime relying on our friendship, but he wasn't there.
There's so much snow here that it's almost impossible to go to another doctor.
And I'm not ill enough to make other people risk their lives to come and get me.
When it's necessary, that's something else.

Here we've got about 30 cm snow. All bushes and trees are covered with a huge load. Like they're having hats on.
Right now it's snowing so much that the 10 cm snow the girls pushed from the gardenpath and the pavement is completely back again.

I love it!
Last night the sky and the world looked a soft pink. It was so beautiful that I dressed myself well and stood in the garden to look at it for a while.

I can't wait to feel a bit better again to walk through the snow.
The crushing sound is so special, and the world looks so peaceful.

Ofcoruse I feel sorry for those who have to use their car and get stuck in endless trafficjams, for those who need to go by train and just can't. For those who have to rely on the busses, as they didn't drive any today.

It's so beautiful!!

I want to enjoy the feeling and the look as long as I can.

News in the online paper

The news in the online local paper is just a fraction of what's printed.
When the paper was just online, people were very interested and visited the site a few times a day.
Now the number of visitors has lowered a lot, due to the fact that the news is very one-sided and they're accepting the most annoying advertisements a webmaster has nightmares of.

Today an advertisement about a rifle scope covered part of the page, at the bottom something of a movie was flashing on a black background and the main article was covered by an advertisement of a bank.
I can't think of a better way to drive people away.
We're not allowed to have rifles in the home or with us outside the home, the bank has advertisements everywhere, so we're so used to them that we hardly see them and the movie, well, when you really need to spend your money on a story that makes you sleep well you'll visit it anyway.

I love reading the paper sitting on the couch with coffee.
From an online paper I expect something sparkly.
But the news I find there seems to be sponsored by the police and the weatherstation.

Right now a group of friends, I'm one of them, is considering to create a new online local paper.
Our goal is not to bring news that can be found in the daily papers, but factual news and news that is news right at that moment.
Already we've got a few reporters, a photographer and an ITCman who is able to put the news straight away online.

Top escape from the advertisements we need reliable sponsors... Haha!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

How's It Gonna Be

1. How's it gonna be in 2011 for you?

After this year and what people did to us, I hope next year will be a lot, a huge lot better.
I guess we'll start the new year with lots of stress until we're finally set free of all ill people.
We have to leave it behind us, otherwise itwill be the main rtraumatic event of our lives. And I personally think that nothing, no thing should exceed the pain and grief caused by the death of my babies.

I hope that soon we'll feel free again and can work on leaving this in the past and leave the bad karma to those who have caused this all.

I hope we'll be able to realise a few dreams.

2. What is your idea of a perfect romantic evening?

Right now I'm not feeling to have one.
I'm OK with feeling perfectly relaxed together. Maybe looking out of the window of my own cottage.

3. What strategy would you implement to deal with drug abuse in today's world?

Make young people feel they're worth to care for themselves.
Now they're regarded as food for the labourmarket and nothing more.
They way society talks about young people, like they're a criminal burden... it's sick.
I've never used drugs because I knew I had some nice talents and I wanted to develop them. There was no place for drugs in my life.
People who dealt with me cared for me as a person.

When we are able to give the youth the feeling of freedom, of being talented and of an open future, I think that influences the drugworld in a positive way.

4. What thing about your family are you least proud of?

That they rather have their dad repair their bicycles than they themselves.

5. What part of the holidays are you really looking forward to?

I don't like the holidays. It's the only time of the year I miss those who died so terribly that I have to push myself to cheer up.

But maybe second christmasday is fun, as we are invited to have dinner at our eldest.

6. Who is the last person you high-fived? Why?

One of my daughters when she heard she was going to Istanbul with the student exchange of school. (It was right before we herad the costs of sending two girls.)

7. Have you ever made out at a drive-in?

Huh? I don't understand...

8. If you had only enough energy left in you for one last smile, who would you give it to?

Ofcourse to my children and when there's a smile left it's for the friend sho's been a real friend for 40 years next year.

9. Tell us about that time when you were the “life of the party”.

That was a marvellous time!
Because I was a balletdancer I felt confident to open any party.
Often I was asked to speak a word, to welcome the main guest or band, or to start dancing when a band started to pay.
I've been told often I was a real stand up commedian, and sometimes when I'm in a waitingroom I can't help myself to start jokes and lift up the spirits of the people there.
Because I never took the role because I wanted to be the centre of attention, I was genuine, and people didn;'t feel disturbed.

Now I think more that people have to be responsible for their own party and their own fun, but sometimes...... Haha!!

Merry Christmas!

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Friday, December 17, 2010


Asthma has been part of my life a long time.
It doesn't dictate me and I want it to stay it that way.

But last night I had a severe asthma/bronchitis attack, which lasted all night and morning.

Each day I take my meds at the same time. It's such a daily routine that I do it without thinking.
Most of the time taking these meds is enough to prevent problems, but I guess the cold and damp got to me. And going by bus, with all the germs, doesn't help either.

Anyway. I couldn't sleep and sat up coughing all night, and in the morning I even considered to call the doc. But it was snowing so much that I didn't want him to take the risk to come and I didn't want to go.
Knowing the hospital protocol I took the additional meds and when that was enough I took more.
Ofcourse I wrote down what I took, in case I needed to go to hospital anyway.

Then suddenly I was able to breathe more.... good.
Soon after the kids came down. Their vacation started today and they slept in.

All what's left is a headache. Which doesn't really bother me.

Again I feel very lucky.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

ballet and snow

Today we had to go to the balletperformance of one of the girls.

By the time I went upstairs to change the rain was falling not by bucket, but with wagonloads.
I just had a very short shower and jumped in my clothes, so I was downstairs 15 minutes later and by then it was snowing. I could hardy see the houses at the opposite side of the road.

Walking to the busstation was kind of tricky, as it wasn't freezing enough to make the snow. I took my walking stick with me without any feeling of shame or regret, because it saved my life three times.

In the centre of town the weather was as badm, but the pavements close beside the buildings were not slippery.

We arrived just in time.

The performance was great and it was nice to see familiar faces.

Going home was as much a challenge as going to town, but we managed it without broken bones.

Tomorrow we need to go to hospital for a check up. Let's see what kind of weather it is at that time.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Today I woke up with the same flu that has reigned in our house for a few weeks now.
I had to do quite a lot though and there was no way to escape from it all.

My autistic son had an appointment with the dentist this afternoon.
His last chance to get problems solved before the insurance stops.

He skipped his last appointment, so I was quite hesitant to believe he would go today.
I tried to create a relaxed feel as possible and even engaged in discussing dog dna testing, a subject he considered interesting.

Then suddenly I got a call from my second son telling me that I had mail.
He said he discussed with his brother that he could go with him to the dentist and when I was OK with that he would come over.

And so he did.

He's been afraid for the detist for a while, but went and was glad he did.
A perfect role model, and at the age of my autistic son a peer role model works far better than mom.

And so they went.

After a while they came back. I heard them talking and laughing in the garden before they came in.

At monday morning some repair is needed. But I get the idea it won't be a real problem.

A firm attitude

Some children need a firm attitude and when they won't get it at home, they'll go and find it.

One of the children of a friend is a very persistant little lady. She has her ways to get the enormous amount of attention she claims. In the past no normal conversation with her mother was possible, because no limits were set.

I quietly started to set those limits myself, using very little steps so the mother wouldn't feel offended.
I saw the girls reacted. First by claiming her mother and kissing her a lot.
But even though it was clear she belonged to her mother, that didn't make her part of the conversation for me.
Unconsciously her mother reacted too. Her bodylanguage was a bit less inviting, and when she started to enjoy the conversation a bit more, she started to keep her daughter a bit away from her. The girl was allowed to sit on the couch, but not on her lap anymore.
Soon after that she began to offer her child the opportunity to play with toys she couldn't otherwise play with.

I cab give plenty of other examples of how the little child's behaviour was molded into more acceptable behaviour.

Yesterday I had to babysit her and her siblings.

When I came in she fell into her usual behavior, but I told her that she woukd get attention too when I was ready with re brother. She looked amazed, but kept quiet nevertheless.

When I brought her upstairs she told me she was happy I was there, because she felt so much calmer inside.

What a great way to decribe her feelings.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Interior design

After building the extension to the school it was time to allow an interior designer to make it into a good place to be.
Part of the extension is a waitingroom for parents and it needed a few modern coffee tables.

A few years ago I was in the building board of a new school and we discussed not only the outer architecture, but also the inner design of the school.
It was one of the most interesting events in my life. Not only because we worked together with rthe most famous architects and interior designers, but also because it made me aware of so very many things, including student safety.
The interior designer wanted an open staircase and balcony because it would sdo so much justice to the spaciousness of the building, but in one single moment I saw a student drop down over the railing.

Now this other school needed coffee tables and lamps.

So when I went there I was very curious.

It's wonderful!!

The tables are modern. They fit in every interior, ranging from classical to minimalistic, but the way chairs and lamps are used to make it a good place to be is amazing.
Handblown lamps, like they're woven from glass, in a straight line above the tables.
A reading corner and a brochure stand on the tables.

It's amazing.

And it makes one thing very clear: even with basic furniture a cosy place can be created everywhere.

Curly kale

Curly kale the way I make it.

Peel potatoes and cook them with some salt and a tiny bit of pepper.

Wash curly kale.
Use only the ones that hasve been on the fields during a night of frost, because that gives the right taste.

Slice kurly kale in tiny bits, put them in a pan with a bit of water, tiny bit of salt and a teaspoon or two with mustard.

Cook it all.

Slice smoked bacon in little pieces and bake it.
When it starts to become glassy, add water to absorb the taste in more volume.

When the potatoes and kale are cooked, take a large pan or bowl and mix them together.

Take a bit aside for people who don't want meat.
Put a piece of butter through the mash and make them happy.

For the others:

Add the bacon to the mash and just enough moisture of the bacon not to make soup of the mash.
Add sausages and put those under the mash.
Let it rest for about 15 minutes.

In the meantime tell everyone you've made the best in the world and complain about the cold outside.

Take the sausages out and slice them.

Present the food with the sausage aside or in the middle.

Have a nice meal.

To be or not to be an iphone

You won't belief it, but I nearly smashed my telephone last night.

Because I expected a phone call from abroad I took my phone with me to bed.
No problem, I always wake up at the first sound.
Too many nightshifts in the past.

As always I tried to get in bed as quickly as possible.
It's such a loss of time to linger on.
So instead of walking beside the bed and putting the phone kindly on the small table I just threw it on the bed from a distance...I thought.

Instead it hit the corner of the table. The back flew away and so did the battery.

Me oh my, I was so happy it was not an iphone, but just a cheap phone.

As technical as I am I took the pieces and started puzzling until it was assembled again. Nothing was broken.

I had to ask someone to fix the time and date. But that was no problem.

Next time I will be more careful. Promise.

Baby sitting or teenager sitting?

I've done my fair share of baby sitting in the past.
Because there's always an older one here at home to watch the smaller ones, people thought it to be easy to ask me.

Grown ups baby sit for free, they think, so why ask a younger one?

They don't realise how much daily routine is broken here when I have to leave at the busiest time of the day to watch the kids of others.

I don't usually accept babysitting requests.
But I can't deal with a certain amount of begging and "I have no one else", and ofcourse it's nice for someone to be able to go out to dinner, so....

I think I'm far too understanding of others.

This week I was asked to watch the teenagers and a younger one of a friend.
I assumed the younger one would be put to bed efore the parents left, but I miscalculated.
I'm not expected after the dishes are done, but right in the middle of our dinner.
I heard it just a few momenst ago.

So much to the distress of my autistic son we suddenly have to eat earlier.
And I have to leave early too.

Problem is that I can't take my computer with me, so all I and planned for this evening needed to be done during the day or will be done during the night.
I'm kind of restless today, and I don't feel like sitting on the couch a whole evening waiting for a key to turn....

Problem solved.

One of the friends of one of my sons works at a shop where they sell games, ipods, cameras, cd's etc etc.
He loves his job and he often has interesting stories to tell about what happened during a day.

Yesterday he suddenly walked in here after closingtime and he clearly was in a bad mood.
I asked him why and he told me that some ipods were stolen.
When they realised it they went to look at the tapes of the surveillance cameras, but they couldn't see anyone stealing them, except an older woman putting her bag nearby. But the stealing act wasn't put on camera.

Now many people are shopping for christmaspresents it's not good not to have any ipods available.
The deliveries to the shops are irregular due to the bad weather.

He didn't know what to do.

I said I's probably order some ipods from internet and put them under glass and tell people they can be ordered.

He thought that was a good idea.

We designed a nice gift card, so they can be given as presents and taken to the shop after christmas to collect the ipod.

Never seen such a happy guy! Problem solved.


Metformin is used in the treatment fo diabetes.
It makes the body more sensitive for insulin, so those with partial insensitivity for insulin might postpone insuline treatment.

Not all patients like metformin.
Most have to discover that it gives you the runs.

Doctors are often jubilant about this medication, because there are in their eyes no severe side-effects. The resulting weightloss is considered to be a benefit.
Research in adolescent girls showed that metformin lowered the body weight more than a placebo (fake tablet), but not as much as some doctors claim it does.
So one has to stay realistic about it all.

Interesting results of other studies show that people who use metformin are less likely to develop cancer.
Animal studies found that metformin kills cancer in the stem cells.
Firther studies seem to proof that using metformin alongside radiation therapy diminished the recurrence risk of the cancer.

It's too early to bring these findings out in the world as clear facts, but these developments are very promising.

I assume this chain of reserach won't have to deal with financial cutbacks, because metformin is very cheap, and thus the ratio: money and treatment benefits is positive.


One of the girls need to follow people at their jobs.
I was one of the people to follow.
Not as a normal mom, but as a journalist.

In the past I've worked at a magazine. I worked my way up from typist to writing journalist to headeditor.
So I know the ins and outs.
I also worked for a paper.

So it's fun to teach her what needs to be done to get news and information on the doormat.

She was kind of amazed to discover that while waiting for some real news to pop-up, all sorts of other jobs need to be done.
Like collecting information for a main article for the weekend edition, going to meetings, calling people to ask if they can deliver information for next week tuesday and analising data that have been gathered by others.

Each journalists has his or her own methods, but some standards are used, especially when health information needs to be put in an article.
The law here states that those without a medical degree are not allowed to hand out medical information. So either a doctor cosigns the article or reviews are used.

One of the subjects that landed on the table today were colon cleanse reviews.
Using the main conclusions together with the experiences of others, gathered in interviews, resulted in a nice article.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Both 6!

It was crowded at the bus and I had to take a seat...lucky to have a seat,.. at the back of the bus.
Someone was coughing in my ear very loud and then she started to peel an orange.

As I', dealing with bronchitis and I'm hypersensitive to orange, I decided to take another place after the bus stopped and let people out.

Another owman must have thought the same, and so we sat together on the small bench.
Within a second we were talking and it was almost a pity she reached her destination.

"I have 6 children", she said, expecting a reaction of oh and ah.
"I have 6 children too", I smiled.

When she was out of the bus she looked up to me and gave me a big smile and a wave.

I'm sure I'll see her again.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Organising practice for school

One of the girls needs to go with three people to see what they do at their job.
I know others schools have included this subject in their curriculum too, but they give the children a list to make a choice.
Here they have to organise it themselves.

Because my daughter wants to go to work that really interests her it took her a while to find people who are able to take her with them, but she managed to get her list filled and signed.

1. a journalist. How to find news and write an article
2. an ICT technician. He's arranged quite a few interesting trips to fix computers and the second part of the day she will get some education in how to design sites.
3. a group leader at a house for kids with special needs.

A great list!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Reason to Believe

1. Has anyone asked you to believe in something that called for a huge leap of faith on your part?

Oh yes. It's the main issue here in our lives this year.
I don't want to talk about it on the blog, but it's in the book I'm writing.
I've learned a lot from it. Certainly to trust my own instincts.
I've also seen how people can intrude in the lives of others and break up whole families.
The person I'm talking about is mentioned by name on internet, so I know she has done what she did to us before to other families.
I can't belief that her superiors are not aware of what's going on, because this woman has a serious psychiatric problem and she's pure danger to nice and loving families.
I guess she's yealous of other women who can cope with more children at once, yealous of loving families or something like that. I hope it's something in that area, because that means she can be helped.

2. When is the last time you moved? Why did you move?

That's about 25 years ago, when we needed a house with garden to raise our children.
An old willow stood in the garden and it was special to me and my familie.
I alwyas said that when it would be gone we'd move.
Last summer it it's time to move on.

3. Malls? ..or one Internet? Are you doing more online shopping this year? The polls say we are, but I'm curious about what the real people are doing.

Real life shopping is more fun.
But I have ordered some small things, like rings and bracelets, on internet.

4. Do you remember the first meme you participated in and if so, what was it?

That friday meme, where questions were served like a dinner.

5. If you could invent something, what would it be?

Haha...I won't tell, because you would invent it too. LOL!

6. Are you finished with your shopping? Do you still a few things to go? What? Not even a game plan? ...or is there just one person you're having trouble finding something for?

Noop, I'm not finished.

7. What's left to do at your place (or where you are going)? Is the tree up? ...or maybe you're just happy you found the Christmas coffee mug and are calling that good?

We alwaays celebrate Sinterklaas, which is our present event of december.
This year we had to skip it, due to the weather and it's moved to christmas.
We never put up any christmasdecoration until after Sinterklaas.

This year I need to go to the attick and get the christmasthings. Maybe this weekend.
A bad bout of bronchitis keeps me calm.
I have bought a small house with lights, and got two ornaments with lights.
So "with lights" will be the theme this year I guess.

8. Is your life turning out the way you thought it would when you were a kid? If not, is it better or worse?

  • I wanted a lot of kids. I have.
  • I wanted to become a balletdancer and -teacher. I did.
  • I wanted to become a writer. I did.
  • I wanted to become a singer. I did that too for a while.
  • And I wanted to move to Scotland. Well, I'm open for opportunities.
9. Tell us about something you'll miss about 2010.

Nothing. Let's move on.

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Friday, December 10, 2010

She's got her shoes!

One of my daughters wanted shoes that were far too expensive for us.
She agreed calmly that she had to wait and maybe even had to save some money.

Each time she went with us to the shoppingcentre she quickly paid a visit to the shop and came back without saying anything.

Until yesterday.

With a big smile she invited us to come with her and she showed the shoes she wanted and the discount.

Within minutes a nice boy joined us and when she asked him for her size he almost jumped away to get the box with the shoes she's fancied for such a long time.

He was clearly happy for her that they were the right size and when we were paying we talked a bit and he said that she had been so very persistent to look every week for a discount that he kept a pair aside for her so she wouldn't miss them.

Isn't that sweet?

I've forgiven him that he tried to sell us socks. Long socks, sneeker socks, extra warm socks, gentlemen's socks. LOL!
I value the fact that he didn't try to sell her the shoes before they were prized down. She told me he has been very patient with her every time she asked if they would be in the sales of the next week. Often he would look it up, just because she was so eager to know.

No...I don't think we can expect any romance.
But he's won a warm place in my heart for caring so much that he had a box with her much desired shoes set apart.

Oh my dear!!! What winter does to you!

This morning the phone rang and a friend asked me to come over for coffee.
No problem...I thought.

But when I walked to her house I had to cross the playground and that took ages because of the ice.
It was not made for the kids to have fun, but it was the consequence of a week full of snow and temperatures below zero.

Last night it rained a lot and the parts of the pavements that were clean before got a good clean of the salt and that was it. They were not icy at all.

But that part of the playground was clearly neglected.
I almost fell a few times before I reached the place where I could hold on to the fence around a house.

Someone just left there and she didn't blink an eye when she saw me trying to move.

"It's slippery, isn't it?", she said.

Before I had time to zip my mouth I said: "Yes, when people won't take responsibility and use a bit of salt it's slippery, indeed."

I guess she just didn't understand me, because she said her goodbyes very friendly.

When I finally arrived at the house of my friend, it felt strange to walk again at a normal and clean pavement.
The coffee tasted delicious.

On my way back she walked with me. She had to go that way anyway. And because she had shoes with anti slip-soles she could give me an arm without slipping herself.

I felt like an old granny and for a moment I could imagine myself being old and wrinkled, trembling at the arm of my daughter.

Oh my dear!!! What winter does to you!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Snowproblems in the streets

It's impressive how many people have complained about the icy streets.
They are right to do so, because apart from the main streets, no snow has been removed.

Today I tried to get out of the neighbourhood to get some groceries, and it took me three times as long due to the ice everywhere.

I got some nice compliments for my clean pavement, but it didn't take away the ill feelings and fear to fall and break a leg.

This morning it has snown again, so it was impossible to see what was underneath the layer of a few centimeters: nothing or ice. Most of the time it was ice.

It's dangerous for everyone, especially the schoolkids with a load of books on their bicycles.

We pleaded for extra boxes with salt and sand, but we're still without them.
So the neighbourhoodcommittee organised a meeting and we discussed buying a toro snowblower.
That way we can keep the whole neighbourhood free from snow without being dependent upon others.

Considering the risk of injuries we'll go ahead and buy one.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


I thought I'd escaoed the dance, but no.

Last week I had a serious asthma attack that made me call the doc and ask for a nebulator instead of an inhaler.
I was lucky to have someone around to fetch it from the pharmacy.

I'm not a kind of panick person, so all the way I stayed calm, and afterwards it turned out that not even all those who were at home realised that I was in real problems. Good.
No need to be busy with the emotions of others at a time like that.

The cold and damp weather hasn't helped, nor has the dry air inside the houses.
I try to control the climate in my house as much as possible, but the past time I've had so many appointments... and I can't tell others what to do in their offices and homes.

Well, all I can do now is use my meds, keep calm and hope it won't develop into someone worse.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Student exchange for the girls

Snow, mist and ice defined the morning.
I was amazed one of the boys came home so early, but he'd been to the dentist and didn't want to go home.

At the end of the afternoon we prepared to go to the school of the girls.
After a quick dinner we dressed very warm and went to the trainstation with small steps over the shiny pavement. Me oh my, it was slippery!

We managed to get the bus in time, which was a real wonder...and some patience of the driver.. :)

At the main trainstation the father of the children joined us. We were just in time at school. But I have to say that many people came in after us.

The girls were nervous. But they were quite happy when they hear to which countries they were going.

One of the girls goes to Turkey (I'll contact some of you as you live in the town she;s going to.) The other one to the south of Spain. (Who lives there? NNE of Cordoba, north of Granada)

Most students were very happy with the place they're going to.

We were glad to be able to go home...meaning more than two hours of shivering in the cold and slippery sliding, hoping to arrive there without broken bones. of the boys could use the car of friends and we were home within 15 minutes.

At home we had long talks about the exchange, full of plans and joy.
A long look into the future.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Good to know

People are facing all sorts of problems with this weather.

A friend of us was waiting for someone who would fix the lock of her shed.
The key got stuck and after a lot of calls she finally managed to make an appointment for today to get it fixed.

But because of the ice on the roads she had to leave early to get her kids from school.

I was talking here with one of the children who was home from school already when my friend called and asked me to come to her place and wait for the repairman.

Ofcourse I went there.

When the guy came we had a talk and I was able to ask some questions about his work.
We always fix the locks ourselves.

Not only will calling to the house owner result in work for him, the lock will be paid too.

Good to know in a time like this.

He was already gone when my friend and her kids came home.

I could surprise her with three new keys instead of two, saving at least 8 euro.

Sometimes happy things happen.

Just one call

One of the boys needs to give a business presentation about his work as a photographer.
He already has a lot of experience, but doesn't have much money to buy equipment.
So he came to me to discuss the matter.

Ofcourse giving a presentation with visual material is best, especially for a phorographer.
People can see his style, use of colours and such and they can show what they like and don't like.

We have a home dlp projector, but it's less convenient than a portable one.
Lucky for my son I know some journalists and one of them had a portable projector when he visited me a few weeks ago.

So I called him and he told us that he wasn't able to give my son the projector, but he could introduce him to his boss and maybe he would be willing to give my son the responsibility for the projector for a day.

The meeting was within an hour and I just got a call from my son that he's able to do some practical work there for a week and that involved taking the projector with him.

Hmmm, clever boss. Now he can see how my son works and think about hiring him, and my son has the projector for his presentation.

Wish everything could be arranged with so much ease.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Stuck in the snow

We still had few traintickets for a full day with the last date of today.
So yesterday I went with a couple of the kids to travel around.

We first went to the north of the country and had plans to go to Amsterdam afterwards to do some shopping, visit our favorite artshop, and have something to eat.

When we were nearly at the place were we wanted to go: Sneek, it started to snow and by the time we arrived there it was a full snowstorm.

We had seen there was a shoppingcentre near the trainstation, so we went there. 4 shops and lots of cars.
With chocolate biscuits we left and decided to go back to the trainstation.
The storm was fierce and lots of snow came down.

At the next trainstation it was terribly cold and we caught a train heading south. In there we discussed what to do and we all decided for Utrecht.

Having a nice time together in the train we suddenly got silent. The train stopped somewhere in no where land.

After a while we were told we would go back to one of the main trainstations because Utrecht couldn't be reached. Trains were either defect or the relais were frozen.
For a while it was unclear of we could reach Utrecht. One way or another we had to go there to be able to go home.
The free coffee was crap.

In a loaded train we hadded to Utrecht.
I was the only one of our group to be able to sit... the chair was broken, but I was able to sit a bit anywhere.

In Utrecht it was impossible to establish if we could travel home. So we went to eat something first. When we came back it was still unknown.

After a long time waiting in the could we managed to get on a train and after arriving in town and catching another one we were finally at home.

In the meantime it had been snowing all the time.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Hard Habit to Break

1. Do you have any habits or rituals at this time of year?

Well, we're on the evening of our december presents event: Sinterklaas.
We cling to that old tradition a lot.

After that, we start decorating for christmas.

2. Polar bears seem to do well in the snow... How about you? Is snow just another thing you deal with when it shows up, or is it shutdown time? ...and if you're posting from a non-snowy locale, do you make trips to actually see snow? It's okay to admit it...

I love snow...a lot!!
And I always try to enjoy it as much as possible. You'll read more about that tomorrow.

This year we've had a very early winter, and today I was in the middle of a snowstorm and enjoyed it to bits even though my cheeks were painful because of the stinging snow.

We can't afford to go on wintervacation to find snow, but when it's here I'm happy.

3. Tell about a toy you remember from your childhood.

I had a doll with a plastic face and a fabric body, I made lots of houses with lego and I enjoyed building with other blocks at my gram.
Once I got a train in a shop and I loved it, but then came my nephew and my mom gave it away just like that. To me that accentuated the difference between male and female so much that I think that was the birth of the feminist in me.
He didn't even like trains... yet he got it because he was a boy.

4. If you could make one thing in the world absolutely free for everyone, what would it be?


5. Do you live close to your immediate family members? If not, how far away are they?

No, they live far away.
My real family are my children and my friends.

6. My mom ordered a turkey dinner from a local market. it was o.k., but not very good. how was your turkey (or last holiday meal) this year?

No turkey and I can't remember a last holiday meal.
I think it was OK.

7. In a one horse open sleigh: Have you ever been on a sleigh ride or a carriage ride? Do you even like horses? Or would you just rather travel by your own two feet?

Not on a large sleigh or carriage. I think I would love it!
I've never had something special with horses, so I don't know if I would like riding one.
I think I
s pity the horse too much to do so.

8. What is your favorite Christmas song? ...and sung or played by whom? You know, the one you tend to listen for on the radio or hit 'repeat' on the player...

The first noel. I don't have a favorite singer.

9. What is your least favorite Christmas song? ...and sung or played by whom? You know, the one you tend to skip on the player...

Let's say I like our own traditionals best.

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Friday, December 3, 2010

Just a friday

Another snowday.

We're getting used to the troubles the snow causes and don't regard them as troubles anymore.
Going to school means leaving a bit earlier and walking through the neighbourhood until the main road is reached where one can bicycle in a normal way.

It also means being creative with food, because the shelves in the shops don't present as much bread as usual.

Adjusting is an art and I've always treated that art as a talent of each and every child. A talent to be develeoped as well as possible.

This morning I welcomed the light of the day, that special light of snow.

Then I realised a nagging pain in my arm and shoulder. Where did that come from?
It took me almost all day to realise it comes from removing the snow from the plastic roof above the back door.

I did some chores and walked to a friend because I had to ask her something. Instead of asking and going back I sat there, and kept het daughter busy while she was at the phone. Her daughter has the same flu as my kids... so no need to worry about infecting others.

Then we had a chat and coffee and when I arrived home my oldest sat there, smiling.

He's very good at baking bread, so he made breadrolls for all of us, with cheese and ham. That tasted so well!

(While he was baking, I mailed childcare to ask for the reason of their decision.)

We had a nice afternoon, discussing a few things and before we knew the kids were home from school and we all were talking and having fun.

Then I suddenly asked why child care spoke about transparency and all sorts of nice things, and why they made a decision without showing us the reports on us and give us the chance to make corrections.
So I spend another mail, and because I didnt; get a reply on the former one from the teamleader I mailed the guardian too. He didn't tell us which motivation they had, (ofcourse I can think of one: my kids are well cared for and my kids are nice, polite and friendly kids, reacting their age, doing well at school, not using cigarettes drinks, drugs or whatever, having an active social life, etc etc.)
He told me he had his vacation next week and after that he'll write the proposal for court to dismiss him from his duty and we would get to read that.

After that we made some plans fro christmas and the eldest went home, and we went to do the usual things: homework, dinner etc etc.

Next week will be busy with a few appointments, waiting for the heating control, visiting a new mom and her newborn baby, a parents evening and hearing where the girls will go on the international journey next spring.

So a relaxed day with the kids was just what was good for the soul.

A relaxed day...almost.

The new agenda is in use. Time flies.

Today I went with my autistic son to his psychiatrist.
We could hardly approach the bus as it was such a slippery mess everywhere.
I asked the busdriver why they didn't use sand when they wouldn't use salt. He just shrugged his shoulders and mumbled something about the old ways being better.

We arrived 15 minutes early. There was no one at the department but the people of the front denk.
It was delightfully quiet.
It was like being alone in a japanese garden.

We talked things through with the psychiatrist and decided to wait with new meds until the endocrinologist would have presented the results.
It was a relaxed meeting and it felt good to be respected for who I am wand what I know.
I also told him the social worker wants to contact him to talk about the approach of my son.
She used to take my words serious before the who toodoo with childcare started. Now she wants to talk with the psychiatrist herself.
I said so to the psychiatrist and he smiled. "Yes, it works that way for some people."
"Indeed, it says more about them than about me."

So I explained why I reached certain conclusions.
I know my stuff and I observe well.

When we left the calm of the department touched us again.
It was almost a pity to leave.

We went home, did our shopping and then found out that sand was used on the bicycle roads. Wow!

At home one of the girls showed what she'd made with beads.
It was lovely!
We need to organise funds for her exchange and I told her that maybe making earrings and such would be a nice way to earn some of the money. She tried to find a job for this holiday, but she couldn't. So maybe this will work.

All in aal it was a very relaxed day, if it weren't that the whole toodoo with that guardian bugs us.
It's time all will be finished and left in the past.
We have final exams to concentrate on, and the usual changes in life.

Up to 2011!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Our Count Down - 14 - will the clock stop ticking?

We were waiting for replies on our letters, but nothing happened until today.

We got a nice letter on the doormat stating Child Care will propose the court to stop the guardianship. So we would see each other in court. The last letters won't need an answer.

At first I was happy, happy, happy...
Then I started to ask myself why she didn't mention the motivation to stop the whole toodoo, as the law clearly states a few situations in which it can be stopped before the whole year has come to an end. (We've had 100 days).

Ofcourse there's nothing the matter with the girls or the rest of the family, so I guess that's the reason.
But after all the disappointments and unwelcome surprises of child protection my trust has gone. (That needs some hard work to be regained the next year).
All the doubts possible jumped in my mind: maybe we've been too critical and difficult by expecting more from those guardians than they gave. We wanted pleasant people to deal with, a good partner in conversation, we wanted to be understood and accepted, we wanted the whole experience to be as pleasant as possible. Maybe we expected too much. Maybe that is now used against us?
The girls didn't feel OK with the guy and answered the questions by mail. Maybe they see that as a negative thing? Wereas I see that as a good way of taking care of themselves and they wellbeing. If they would have been told they had to go they would have gone.

This afternoon I was with my autistic son at my family doctor and ofcourse I asked him if they had called him. "No".

All sorts of things went through my mind, and then the only thing substantial stayed:
The court decided for guardianship because that teacher dais my girls were depressed, afraid to go to school, had no contacts etc etc, and it turned out that my girls are OK and the guy was mistaken. We've said that from the moment we knew what he had said to child protection.

Well, I'm going to write a mail to child care asking them the reason, when to expect the date of the courtsession and some other details.

Keep your fingers crossed this clock will stop to tick and we can have a normal life far as we can have a normal life. LOL!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

No bread and decisions due to winterstorm

We needed bread and as I had nothing at home to bake one, I had to go to the shops.
No problem. I had to shop for the presents for Sinterklaas anyway.

So I put a thick shawl around my face, a fancy thing on my head, two cardigans on, legwarmers, my best coat, and battled my way against the storm on my bicycle.
At times I had to put my foot on the ground because the wind brought me to a complete stand still.

When I arrived at the shoppingcentre I needed some time to feel my legs again.

I had to go to three shops before I found bread on the shelves.
It's clear that many shops didn't get their products delivered today. Already a shortage of bread, vegetables and some drinks could be seen.

I tried to find the presents I needed to buy, but I gave up looking for them after a while.

At home it was decided we'll skip Sinterklaas and give presents at Christmas, so everyone can go shopping when it's convenient.
It feels odd. But one doesn't send anyone out at the moment.

Inside the home it's cozy. We had a tasteful dinner, had fun, watched TV, and when it was time for the girls to go to bed it started to snow light glistening snowstars.

I don't like the cold, but it's better than a hot summer.
Nature is so interesting now. The skies, the reflecting snow in the middle of the night, the lake.
Maybe I'll put myself in all sorts of layers of warmth and make a short walk later.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Biting cold

It's a long time ago I heard crackling and breaking sounds when it was freezing. But this evening I heard it.
It's so very cold that the snow disappears from the pavement without salt or anything else.
Dry freezing.

We're still dealing with a kind of flu.
Headaches and nausea are the main symptoms.
The cold is not a big help for those who have to go through it.

Just one week and it's Sinterklaas. That's the december presents event, like christmas presents. But here it's in the night of december 5 to 6.
We drew names and tried to motivate everyone to send their wishes by mail to the whole family.
Those who bought their secret things and managed to get it into the house before this cold weather are lucky.
The rest needs to go shopping tomorrow... and I am one of them. Wooho! Brrrr..

Sinterklaas won't be a huge event this year.
No money.
Just a cup of hot chocolate and a cookie and a small present.

I long back to the years we could buy the kids a lot of extra's.
Those were good years, with those great big eyes in those small faces.
Pure happiness.

Well, I'm happy to have children that appreciate what they get and don't grief about what they don't get.

Monday, November 29, 2010


The day was awfully grey and dark.
The sky was so heavy that we didn't need a weatherforecast...
in the afternoon...

some tiny hails fell.
Not much.
Just like a very short soft shower.

It was like nature was taking a breath and then....


A fullblown snowshower was covering the world in a white blanket.

It was beautiful!!

Ofcourse I wanted to go for a walk, but the girls had to go to ballet, and there was too much to do.

But I saw the layer of snow growing.

It's around zero now.

So tomorrow morning it will be dangerous.

But we have snow!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Yesterday some parts of the country got a layer of snow, today people were able to iceskate on natural ice.

The cold weather will last a while, so at more places iceskating will be possible.
Already two towns are trying to be the first to organise a marathon on natural ice, either tomorrow evening or tuesday.
A third town will join them, I expect.

We'be been watching the weather all day, because we love to have some snow too, but nothing happened. The sky didn't look like it until late in the afternoon when it was already getting dark.

So maybe this night some snowflakes will come to this small piece of the world.

Other people are more interested in what Likiweaks will publish this evening.
Well, when one has nothing special to do...

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Dark Lady

1. Have you ever been to a fortune teller? If yes, what happened?

But one approached me when I was in town and in a hurry. She took my hand without asking.
I didn't like it and told her I had to be elsewhere and i was certain we would meet again if her message to me would be important.

2. How do you cope in an uncomfortable social situation?

It depends.
A joke often works well.
The last weeks I'm talking and talking.

3. A genie appears (of course). She asks, “If you had 3 wishes but each took 3 years off your life, what would you wish for and why?”

  1. Stop the situation we're in and let us be the family we were before human lightning struck.
    We were happy and OK until someone acted upon the mistake of a child and created a nightmare for us. I'm fed up dealing with negative people who think the worst of us. I want our lives back.
  2. Worldpeace. Need I explain?
  3. A small cottage near Oban or on one of the isles of Scotland, or in Wales.
    Realising an old dream and returning to the roots of my genes.
4. Would you rather lose your soul mate or never meet them at all?

I've lost my soulmate due to life. I've got rich memories and I'm happy to have known him.

5. What is the hardest thing that you have ever had to do?

Bury my own child and a few years later bury another baby.

6. Have you ever had a miracle happen to you or your loved ones?

When I was young I had a marble lamp on the ceiling of my room.
I used to stand under it when I heard my dad go to shave and then I would walk to him and see him shave. The foam and just one strike of a thing and the hairs on his chin were gone. It was amazing.
That day however, I walked towards him and stepped in front of him. I never did.
Right at that moment the heavy lamp came down.
If I had kept the daily routine I would have been dead.

7. Tell us about a quote that you can relate to. Why can you relate with it?:

There are many quotes I relate to, because I've found their truth in my life.

One of my grams: "Just be yourself and if the other person is a good person, being yourself is always enough."

8. What personality trait has gotten you into the most trouble?

Loving my children a lot.
We've been blackmailed with the outplacement of our children not to deny allegations.
So sad....

9. For those in The States, how was your Turkey Day? If not from the US, do you celebrate a day like Thanksgiving?

I think being grateful is an attitude, not just a one day event.
It should be in your being, the moment you wake up until the moment you fall asleep.
As simple as that.

Want to take part too?
Click the logo.

Logo made by me with tubes from Outlaw by Design.
You can request the logo, but only when you'll credit properly.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Our Count Down - 12

On wednesday we had a meeting again.

My main goal was to try and establish a pleasant working relationship based on equality.

I've tried all sorts of ways, but apart from discussions that were superficial, nothing interesting happened.

Again no empathy at all.
At least one might expect some consideration for what the girls are going through... nothing.
No question if they've had a nice birthday.

Again we were faced with all too hasty conclusions.
I said the girls have recently gone through a few weeks of being tired and getting low grades, referring to the lack of a relaxed summer- and autumnvacation.
He threw himself on the subject, stating things that were not true and certainly not intended. I didn't say they were tired from before the summervacation, I didn't say they were tired because of him, I didn't say anything else than that they recently went through a period of tiredness. It might even be due to the flu that some of their friends had.

His frame of mind is very limited. He can't understand where I'm coming from when I tell him that my relationships with people are based on being myself and the acceptance that the other person is himself too. In fact, to feel myself comfortable the other should be himself too.
Playing Child Care copper or trying to outwit someone else is creating a distance between people.
I guess he needs it.
I don't blame him, but I'm clear towards his teamleader how we feel and what happens between him and us.

The girls don't feel comfortable and save with him.
I think it's great they can define their own boundaries, and I share their feelings.
When I told him about that he had his interpretations ready.

I wrote his teamleader before and she told me she would let us know next week about the outcome of the teammeeting.
Then I wrote her asking how to deal with the fact that he wanted a meeting with my daughter alone. If it was absolutely necessary, as it's not my parenting style to force my children to deal with people they don't feel save with.
We as grown ups can deal with the situation, even though we don't like it, but the girls... that's different.
They shouldn't be exposed to people like child protection who just write about them what they want and this guy who interprets things, uses al sorts of verbal games etc etc.

I was mailed that my daughter was allowed to give a writen reaction.

I was glad to be able to catch her just in time, before she left school.
I told her about the option to write, but left it up to her whether to go or not.
She was happy to come home and write... because it was "just a waste of time to go to town and back again".

We also went to school this week to hear how the girls are doing.

The groupleaders were very clear: the girls do well, are OK, don't require any special attention from child care.
One of the teachers mentioned that one of the girls had fear of failure, had her training and that the school kept a close look on her, but that she did very well.

The guy threw himself on the paper... one could see his face: finally something negative!!!
He didn't ask any questions. Didn't even want to know where it came from, how severe it was, etc etc.

Well, I wish I knew what the guy is thinking.

And I wish I knew how he goes about with his own children.
He should be a perfect parent and should have perfect children to feel himself so above us.

Count down: 271 days to go.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

No orange ladies anymore.

I love birthdayvisits.
These occassions are such a nice way to see people a few times a year and talk about all sorts of subjects and share memories.

Because one of the ladies brought up the nice summercolours of some people, we hit the subject of indoor tanning lotions.

It's about 30 years ago that an expensive brand launched a new product: a tanning lotion that could be applied directly on the skin and didn't need any sunlight to create the perfect summer look.

Our neighbour, who always wanted to be nicer, better and more modern than all the other ladies living in the street, bought this product and at a tuesday evening she told her husband to get a cup of coffee at our place and she closed the door..... and didn't want to open it again.

It took a lot of talking and promisses not to laugh before she let her husband in.

She was orange.

Not a bit. A lot!

Then my mother was called, who had a burst of laughter too, and they all had the plan to call the hairdresser of the village to ask him for advice.

he had none, as he didn't know the cream, but he advised to take a bath with bathsalt and maybe it would go away.

The good soak didn't work.

One of our nieces was called. She was a hairdresser and beautician.
Her only advice was to scrub... and call the factory.

So the neighbour tried to scrub it off, which didn't work and in the morning the factory was called.

Turned out they recalled the products a few weeks before, due to long lasting colour effects. All they could do was to send a courier with a product that might cover the orange.

For weeks my neighbour looked like she's bathed in shoepolish.
Her skin was shiny brownish, so everyone knew that she'd used something to look better.

After many weeks she started to look normal.

Something like that won't happen anymore.
Products are tested and retested before they're put on the market.
Now one is offered a variety of products to tan the skin and these products are subject to a large list of requirements.

No orange ladies anymore.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


She was a cute baby girl and I remember when I first held her in my arms.
She was the first baby close to home after I decided not to want to be pregnant anymore.

The years that followed were interesting.
She was growing fast, developed well, and had an intense need to be present.
At times it was impossible to have a conversation when she was in the room, and at a certain moment I told her to be quiet.

She was surprised as she was not used to be told what to do or not to do.

I told her that she was in my house and she needed to follow my rules.
I could not allow her to talk over and over again when her mum and I wanted to have a good time chatting, simply because I had 6 children and didn't want them to get in between it all too.
"One rule for all children in this house."

To my surprise she accepted it. "OK".

I had to remember her of the rule a few times and then matters were settled.
At her home I often told her that she might try to use the rule there too, and she was relatively quiet when I was there.

At the birthday of the girls she and her mom visited me.

She'd grown a lot, smiled a lot, and was clinging to her mother in precisely the same way.

Then suddenly she walked to the couch I was sitting on, sat beside me and told with a clear voice: "You're my second mom", and hugged me.


Eye cream

Cold is heading our way.
You won't hear me complain, because it's just the perfect time for cold weather...late autumn.
I always like the fact that it freezes for a week or more, because it's good against the bugs.

Pity is that cold weather here often also means grey days and the heating on all day.

It sure has a negative effect on my skin.

So when I was making the grocerylist I was thinking that it would be wise to add another item: eye cream for dark circles.

A few years ago I got a sample of a cream. I used it the past winters when I had to go out. It covered the dark spots under my eyes.
Because I'm wearing glasses any skinproblems around the eyes are subject of attention because they are magnified a bit.

A good cream keeps the area moisturised and disguises any discolourisation.

Do you use a cream?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A mix

I was asked how my mouth is doing.

Well apart from the fact that it's still there, I can say I'm at the better side of all the pain now. (I hope).
The surgery itself went fine, but a srew came lose and when it was reattached the pin was turned lose from it's surroundings. I've had terrible pain and I wonder how I was able to go on with all those meetings and stuff, because the painkillers worked only for a part.
I didn't sleep well because of it and I still have to catch up.
The pain is less since yesterday evening and I'm very glad about that, as you can imagine.
There's a blister on top of the wound now... with a firm skin on top. Se we'll see what that does. As long as the crew doesn't come lose before it should come lose... and as long as it gives in when it needs to be turned out....

Boy 3 has found the perfect place for his practical work for his education: the main hospital in town. He's studying security and was especially delighted to see that he and his collegues are also part of the actions of the emergency helicopter. It's like realising one of his dreams.
He found the place himself, applied for it without talking with anyone and even though they had to put up a formal selection event which attracted quite some applicants, he got the job.
As the university is also part of their security area, he'll have a good time learning there.

Some of the kids are going to Harry Potter tomorrow as part of the birthday present for the girls.

I'll launch a worldwide secret santa event for Action For Autism tomorrow or the day after.
It was delayed a bit due to some ill co-workers, but there's not much work left, so tomorrow and thursday will be enough to get it going.

Between now and christmas I need to paint the livingroom. A new thermostat was put on the wall and it's round. Which doesn't provide a close fit to the square space available... So it needs painting to have a nice wall again.

There's quite some fuzz about a book that paints a picture of the pope. Pity I don;t worj for the magazine anymore which wanted me to review the book that was published when the former pope was still alive.
A comparison would have been nice.

On the other hand... my spiritual life has developed and I'm quite happy with the present studies.

Snow is expected for this week.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Our Count Down - 11

The way we feel about the new guardian keeps bugging my mind.
I told him how we felt, but didn't get much response on the content of the message when i was talking to him.
So I mailed it and got a reply back: It's your problem.

So I let him know I'm not from that tradition.

In the eighties, or short before, there was a kind of attitude among ccertain students and other people in society that everybody was responsible for his own problems.
Ofcourse there's a truth in that, I don't deny that. But they used it as an excuse not to be bothered and certainly not to care.
None would lift a finger to help someone else.

Not my piece of cake.

So I tried to solve our problems by talking with him about it.
That got me an insight in how he acts. Nothing more.

In fact he suggested things by telling me they didn't have an endless supply of guardians.

Today I took plenty of time to write a letter to the teamleader stating that it's up to her if she takes him of the case or not.
I clearly states what I had observed and that I can tell my girls to cooperate, but that I can't tell them to trust him.

I also wrote a bit about one of the statetments about us that we're not able to look for help and accept it.

A ridiculous statement. As a mom of 3 autistic boys and one with ADHD and dyslexia I can't do without reaching out for help. Diagnostics, medication, therapy, support, entrance to protected living facilities, help at school, etc. etc.
There's nothing thrown through the mailbox, nothing waiting at the doormat. We had to arrange everything ourselves, and what is the use of making it all happen when you won't accept it?

Hopes that what I wrote makes a difference.

But it feels ridiculous to defend ourselves against such thoroughly stupid ideas.

still to go: 275 days

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Cold weather and snow this week?

We were surprised by the weather forecast for this week: freezing cold and snow at the end of the week.

Ofcourse we went online to have a look at the site of the national weather institute.
They're always kind of held back in their forecasts.
Indeed: it would be cold, but not minus 13 and they didn't mention snow...yet.

I'm so happy for the girls it won't be as bad that they have to go to school through 15 cm of snow...

even though I could manage it when I was their age.

Saturday, November 20, 2010!

When the recession hit many countries we were told our country was not hit hard and we would escape most of the problems.

I think that minister meant himself.

Many people are facing a very hard time, and so do we.
Already we have to turn each and every coin and we have to save on many things. But that'll get worse.

Insurance costs will go up. Not only the monthly pay, but also our own risk, as they call it. And there are talks in the government about making people pay for help from Youth Care. Imagine that! I don't need their help at all, but they meddle in because of mistakes of others and we might have to pay 3200 euro for that!

We don't have a car, but I think we should have to reconsider, even though I think the outcome will be: no car.
The costs of transportation have gone up tremendously, due to the disappearance of a special card which was used in our area and due to the introduction of an electronic system.
No trips to town just to go shopping, or a quick cuppa at a friend for less than an hour. I'm glad I'm not in many organisations right now, otherwise I would have to cut back on those cativities.

It's not our own problem. Friends with families go through the same, and some are considering selling their house and live smaller.

I'm glad we've never lived rich, so we can deal with it all. Even though I feel sorry for the kids.
Especially the girls are at an age that small things are such fun. But they cost rather much.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Our Count Down - 10

This week I had a meeting with the guardian without others present.
I took a taperecorder with me and he was not quite happy about that.

Nevertheless he acknowledged that it's known there that Child Care and the like use blackmail. They use the children to get the father out of the house.
He said it a few times.

Either he's not well instructed about the fact that a spokesperson should talk about that subject and he's not aware of the implications of his statements, or his ego is big enough to make him ignore that. I made him aware of the fact that I'm writing a book. That didn't make him withdraw the statement. (I think he didn't take it serious.) I also said I would turn to his superiors for confirmation when the time is ripe and he didn't blink an eye.


The strange feeling of distrust about his person stays.
I tried to make him aware of that, and he mailed me it's my problem.
I mailed back it is at least a problem of interaction and I'll think about it.
A copy went to his teamleader.

Today I went to the social work organisation of our town to talk about it all.
She was nice and impressed me with the way she used my name. I felt acknowledged, which was a kind of strange feeling after all these months.
Present was a student who took part in the conversation. Nice woman too.

They took a lot of notes, with names and all.
Heard the whole story with the main questions: what's their vision on how to deal with the situation, how to deal with this guy we don't trust.

It's not resistance against the situation, because we went well along with the other guy.

They took the whole situation quite different than I.
Acdcording to them we shouldn't have been there in the first place, so they thought it would be good to think about this matter in their own team and se what can be done.

I don't think we can change anything at all, as that judge took the wrong report as true, but maybe they know more than I.

So I didn't go home with answers on my questions, but I did go home with the feeling that I can establish a normal contact with a social worker, feel trust and exchange opinions without ill feelings.

She will call me with their reaction, which can be anything.
Either more talks and support in dealing with the guardian, a referral to a lawyer, or something else. It might even result in them stating they can't handle the situation.
Well, they are honest and saw me far more as the person I am than that guardian.

Our count down: 279 days to go.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

It´s their birthday!

It´s the birthday of the girls.

As we didn't have bought real presents yet, because we had to spend our time on other things and we thought we would be able to shop after the meeting of complaint of yesterday, we had a visit to the shopping centre here right before closing time.

I found some very nice boxes with sprays and such. Same content, different looks. Two nice boxes for jewelry, and some hairaccessories.
We gave them yesterday evening, because their dad would not be around this morning and because they could use the hairthingies.

They were very happy with the gifts and loved the giftboxes. Phew!!

They're real young ladies of 15 now.
Good responsible girls with a brighful look at the future.
I'm very proud of them.
And I love them to bits.

Happy birthday girls!!

The official complaint

Isn;t it strange that filing a complaint against a person of Child Care doesn't reach the statistics until you've passed a few levels of complaining?

We;ve had a meeting with the person who made the mistakes, then the teamleaders.

At those levels complaints are worth nothing.

Yesterday we went to the boss of this Child Care region.

Interesting guy.
He could have been the brother of one of my mentors at university who now has become mayor of a nice town.
The same way he moves his head, tone and tembre of voice.
But he was nicer.

He talked a lot at the beginning of the meeting, explaining the procedures.
It came down to the fact that we can go two more steps higher, that he will conduct and investigation when he sees fit to do so, and that it's for the benefit of the organisation.


And we?

Well, in very exceptional cases a letter will go to the courthouse stating that the report was not OK, and it will be filed.

Well, bloody @#$%^!!!

The meeting was fine. He listened well, made plenty of summaries, and I'm now sure his adagio of life is summarisation and simplification, but he got our main complaints well on paper, thanks to a woman who studied law and was nothing else than his secretary.

It wasn't an unpleasant experience. In fact we smiled a lot, had some laughs and even joked.
He could have become a good friend if he was not at the other side of the problem.
So he´s the perfect guy for that position. LOL!

If he's honest... his building won't be a happy place for some people. If he's not, he's a good actor and lyer.

Strangely enough when we went home we felt a kind of satisfaction that we've taken that step.
If it turns against us... we'll deal with that.

But it sure feels good to lay the problems back where they belong.

Preparing for december

We're preparing for Sinterklaas,. That's our giving and receiving event of December. Santa Claus doesn't visit us, but his origina; character: Sinterklaas.
he arrived in our country last week and will leave in the night of december 5 to 6 deceber, leaving presents.

We've drawn names.

Now we're making wishlists and they're send around.

I don't like wishlists. The strange fenomenon of not knowing anything before the event always hits me, and as soon as it's over I know such a lot!!

My autistic son doesn't have those problems. He wants an xbox 360, with all accessories.
It's a kind of oversized wish, considering the fact that we're allowed to give presents of 15 euro.

There's a secret wishlist in my mind:
One of my daughter needs a new bicycle and a PC for school, the other one a PC too, my autistic son his xbox 360, my second son a new bicycle too. My oldest a nice suit or wintercoat..and a haircut, but I'm sure he'll resist that. LOL! My third son would love to have a new computer or a hard drive.

It won't happen... unless Sinterklaas really exists.