A whiff of Irish Spring and Give me Jesus

“Screaming again, Benjamin”…

“Eli, let him play by himself”,

papers spread all over the floor in messy piles…CPA calling and needing me to wrap it up…

Finally, Benjamin doing a puzzle, Eli quiet…Josiah sleeping…

Quickly matching the proper interest files…

Looking up, the reddish head child who fears nothing…

Eli..his cheeks all flushed red saying one of his few words…”uh oh”

that is never good…

Wet dripping body, cold, wet dripping body…pointing finger to the…bathroom.

Plugged sinks, cold water cascading over the front of the vanity, dual sinks, dual waterfalls…

Floor a puddle, Irish spring scent floating in the air as the soap boat tries to find its way over the top of the falls…

“Give me Jesus” blasting from my Pandora account back at my work area…

Bowls buckets

And Jesus

Somehow, Jesus…gave me the breath, the calm, the presence to just turn off the spigots, grab a bowl and bail into the bucket…and not scream and breathe and send the gentlemen up to their room..

Third time this week, I need a floor drain.


Don’t Screech over Spilled Pediasure


That is good in theory, however…

The past few weeks have been more than hard.

Ray’s mom has gotten very unsure of herself and her ability to be alone. One of the children stay over every night or she stays here…and she camps out in the pink chair and folds clothes, bless her heart.

Not really sure what happened, we are thinking mini strokes, but, at 89 she has decided against having a cat scan to tell for sure. Her blood work came out fine.  She no longer drives, cooks, or cleans, but she still is able to do self-care tasks. Ray’s brother, Rudy came in for a visit since things have changed so rapidly and so dramatically.


Needless to say, my chore list has grown a notch, now counting out pills for “yaya”, making sure she is hydrated, keeping the bathroom empty of Benjamin showering constantly and the floors clear of residue from the children so she doesn’t trip…and  I am more home bound than ever. I tried to leave her with the kids and the sitter once in the past two weeks, but she felt too insecure…that is my next plan, get her able to stay with the sitter.


While all of this is happening, pruning is happening once again. Remember about a year and a half ago, we had to stop leading our 4-H group because Eli was in the hospital during sign-ups we could not go to the mandatory meetings and one thing after another shut the doors of that activity…


Well once again, through really no fault of our own we have to get rid of most of our herd. We just cannot do it anymore. Ray is working 80 plus hours a week, with all of our special children and now “Yaya”.

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 I can not and have not for about a year and a half taken charge of the medical health of the cows and calves… and something poisoned some of them over the last week, we think it was either a fungus or some kind of weed in their hay…we had some very sick and dying cows and lots of tears from our daughter who loves them so much. There was nothing we could do, so the funnel grew narrower… 

I have found that you can fight God’s direction, but if you are sincerely praying for God to direct your steps…you should not fight a nudge or shove from the rod of the Shepherd… 

So, Shyloh and I are picking a few to keep, four or five and letting the rest go… how does one choose??


Ouch, there goes another branch. Now all that is left is our family and our business, no 4-H, no dairy herd, no church… I am feeling quite bald here.

God give us strength… my prayer has been, “help me, give me strength…” and again…”help me, give me strength…”


Today I had a breakdown from all of the pressure: Eli has been a typical toddler pill; into everything, climbing everywhere and his new trick…unscrewing caps..and opening the refrigerator. I was feeding Josiah when I see a little imp running with a square bottle, orange liquid sloshing out of it… oh stink… yep pediasure, do you know how sticky that stuff is??


I lost it; yep I did… I took the almost empty bottle from his hands. Sobbing and crying I grabbed towels and sopped up the tacky liquid from the cracks in the hardwood floor, muttering and crying…the poor  child thought I had lost my mind… and maybe I did for a second…”help me, give me strength…” and I took Eli to bed and told him to stay there, I had him so confused, he did…


Gathering the remnants of my brain back together, I took a break, edited some pictures and wrote this blog…now onward!!

DSCN1950And I did not even tell you about the week where Ian got shot by a bee bee in the chin and they would not take it out in the office and he needed surgery. And after me being gone two days, Benjamin reverted for two weeks and smeared his poop and peed everywhere…nope did not even tell you that… so, pray with me…

“God help me, give me strength…”

John 15:2

Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.

– King James Bible “Authorized Version”, Cambridge Edition

The Eli-Joe Sale


The Eli-Joe Sale

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A few weeks ago, I was getting calls and notices non-stop for medical bills that had fallen between the cracks of coverage for Eli and lots of copays for Josiah…


I asked God what I should do: and a garage sale came to mind. Our community has a yard sale every year at the same time at the very end of September. I put a status on my facebook page stating I was having a yard sale for the medical expenses for Eli and Josiah and donations of items poured in. I called it the Eli-Joe Sale. The church on the hill gladly donated their parking lot for us. Since we live out of the way, if we would have had it at our house, we would have missed much of the yard sale traffic.


In some cases, we picked up items…in other cases, people dropped things off. The piles of items grew and I began to worry. I had not really given much thought with HOW to conduct the sale with three babies under the age of five and transporting all of the things to the church. All of the boys work at the tire shop on Saturday morning, the day that the yard sale was scheduled.


But then came Becky… Becky is a family friend, full of gumption and drive, and most of all, had a plan !!


I left it all up to her to price everything and place everything and she did a great job! It so happened she had Friday off and asked to switch with someone for Saturday off too, and got it! Shyloh was her right hand helper. So we were in business!


Thanks to all of the friends and family who donated items and time and money, we raised $533.01, enough to pay off the oldest bill and one of the other bills for Josiah, and the phone is quiet! We do have a few things that did not move that we are going to put in a local auction facebook site so there will be a few more dollars added to that pot.  God is good!!


Four Months Already?

Four months already?

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I cannot believe that Josiah is four months old!! Where oh where did the time go? He is really growing. He flew through the NB sizes; is out of 0-3 month clothes and is now in 3-6 month clothes already! He has the head control down, whoo hoo!

2013 Fair,Josiah_272He just discovered his feet and toes. Up to this point, most of the time, he sat or laid with his feet and legs really limp. He did not try to push against my hand with his feet, try to push with his legs in a standing position or anything. But this week, He saw his feet and loved them.

2013 Fair,Josiah_241He also can hold toys for short periods of time.

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And everything goes into the mouth! He is always poking his tongue out and wants to lick and taste everything. He BELLY laughs. Really, he does… and it stops all of us in our tracks.

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Oh what a baby… He is still setting off the apnea monitor, forgetting to breathe when he sleeps; twice last night…but it is a lot less frequent.

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Isn’t he beautiful?? Oh my heart, he has sure gotten a piece of mine. And now he is completely wowing his Daddy…  His hair has the cutest little curly-Q’s  …I could go on… and on…

I cannot believe we were so lucky to be chosen to be Josiah’s parents…What a blessing.

Spinning Plates

My sister put it appropriately when she said after coming home from Virginia, I would be posting more, but right now I was trying to keep my plates spinning in the air.


Where to begin… Kids went to camp. First Micah went to senior high camp/ Shyoh and Ian went to Junior high camp. Faith and Mazie got their hair braided and went to two Bible schools, just two days for each one, due to a few crashing plates…

I caught up on bookwork except for meeting with the CPA.

Faith's Masterpiece

Faith’s Masterpiece

Benjamin would drive us nuts by eloping. The last time, Ray was here, I put Josiah down for the night. Ray changed Benjamin’s diapers (yes he is still not potty trained) then laid Eli down. I am talking two minutes max…we lost Benjabie…the top to bottom quick search of the house: the kids disperse to their assigned areas and we scour the house as one goes outside to the road…Ray went to the road. Benjamin was almost out of sight on the road pulling his yellow wagon; his eyes glued to the power lines.


I ordered some door alarms that night. Finally we are all on the same page that this is a needed and necessary thing to keep our family safe. The special one needs us to do this for him. We will have to engage and disengage the alarm many times I know, but if it keeps him alive and safe…DSCN0781

Eli has been falling so much and hitting his head that I am worried something is wrong with his balance again. He seems as if he is fine for a while, then he has vertigo. I finally heard from the lawyer regarding his subsidy/medical card for adoption and it is approved and has been since May 2 but I do not have the card in hand…seeing is believing. DSCN0756

The cardiologist looked at Josiah’s reports then we had a bunch of tests… Adoption is weird. They would not give me physical papers since the name needed redacted (they take out the identifying information for the baby). Sorry but with a special one I am not looking at the name!! I want to know information about the child and his health for his own well-being!! Something needs changed here and fast. Why the papers are kept while they redact might be the difference in something very important…as it is here!! What they told me was much different than what the report said!!DSCN0768

He does have an OPEN foramen ovale, 3mm. The cardiologist was concerned about unequal pressures in the ventricles. He said it is normal for newborns but the pressures should be almost equal right now and they are not. But most concerning is the left and right pulmonaries are small… so we need to go back in one month and re measure these parameters to make sure that things are improving


And we are no longer attending church. The older children can if they wish, but we are once again at a crossroads. Churches depend on order. Benjamin elopes. Benjamin has melt downs…and he cannot stay locked in the nursery anymore; he is four. We have been trying to transition him into the children’s church class, but the teachers like order and Benjabie does not fit in the orderly box. The first Sunday I went downstairs with the children after Josiah came home… after looking in the class and he was in a chair all by himself in the back of the room with Shyloh trying to engage him…and he was just a puddle: the stress of transition created the water/the mud/and the flailing around in the mixture. We were trying to take small bites of it so that he could handle it. They wanted him to be either in the nursery or the class and not bounce between the two. This is our fourth child that does not fit in the box.


Soo…God loves us and we are doing church at home: God will surely meet us here!! He does every day and we have more than two or three to gather together… He sees it.

Until you are a special family you don’t see how the struggling all week; at the store, at the pool, at the park, in the car, at the restaurant, at the doctor’s; see the looks, hear the continuous comments about how your child “should be” doing thus and so…and then on Sunday, when you want to lay your burden down, have others come along side and pray and love on the children that society will not or has trouble accepting…and you get the same response as the world…Churches there is something wrong. There are many, many families of special needs children that no longer can attend church because the order in the church is more important than the children that come in and sit on the pews…

But at least I know God loves them and if He is the only one who comes along side us and supports us…then that is enough. He is sufficient.


Wonder how he is today?

5/18/13      6:34 am  Given:    $6345                                 Needed:   $6855

Got up thinking of our new little bundle… and just imagining what he will look like!!

Does he have hair? Does he have big solemn dark eyes?

Does he love snuggles or just like to be held when eating? Well if that is the case, we have to change that!!

All I know is: He has a crease in his hand like this:

And a toe that does this:

and a cannot wait to see him!! Thank you all for your giving and the number needed is almost the same as the number given!! Thank you all!!

5/18/13      6:34 am  Given:    $6345            Needed:   $6855

For our Adoption Fund:

Henceforth and Forevermore!!

Henceforth and Forevermore…

Bright blue sky, clear day, crisp early May temperatures…a perfect day, for an adoption FINALIZATION!!

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What a road we have been on the past year and a half, but today, it was about celebration! The kiddos took off school, we got into our fifteen passenger “THE Behemoth” as Ian calls it and traipsed to the courthouse with a girlfriend and grandma in tow!!

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Caseworker was a bit late and round and round Eli and Benjamin ran…around and around the rotunda of the courthouse.

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The lawyer, caseworkers and the judge previewed the case before we were called into the chamber. And then… it became very interesting. Benjamin has taken a liking to microphones since he sings with the girls on the Wii. And when I was called to the stand first and right in front of me was…well.. a microphone.  He came up and sat on my lap and tried to be quiet, but it did not work. The judge asked him if he would try to be quiet and he said, “no.” So a minute or two went by like this: The lawyer,  “Can you spell your name”….Benjamin:”mommy that’s a microphone, Mommy can I talk to you…Get down here, mommy”  until Levi had mercy on the whole courtroom and took Benjamin out for a while.

The judge listened to testimony then spoke about how so many things he sees makes him feel like there is no good in the world anymore and how happy he was to preside over this case.

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Right when they were to declare the adoption decree…the door opens and in walks Officer Hunter and his wife. The proceedings were stalled as our caseworker acknowledged him before the judge and the courtroom. We were so glad they made it! Officer Hunter was Eli’s saviour…he delivered him and did CPR after which his birthmomma requested safe haven for him.

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And finally the decree…”henceforth and forevermore he shall be known as Eli Hunter Primel.”

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And then the reporters came in. The judge called them because he wanted the story to be known; something good in this cold, hard world. So I guess soon the story will be printed in the Tribune Review, Pittsburgh!

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Tractor Time


So later in the day… Levi comes home from work and finds Mystic again….(that dumb old cow)

In his words: “I spotted a cow stuck in the middle of the crick. I went to try to move her myself. And…I did not move her. She was impossible to move. So, I went and got Micah, and I realized we needed a third person to pull on her head…so I got IAN…

Whenever we rolled the cow over we realized her whole left front leg was sunk straight down in the mud. So…. We pushed and lifted legs then we realized her back legs were both stuck…we unstuck her legs three or four times so…. Tractor time….

Put a halter on her chains and hooked her head to the tractor…and we rolled her on her side then drug her outta there…

Then as soon as we got her out of the swamp she stood straight up! And we put her in the pen.”

And now the teamwork mud pictures…the fun stuff


 …the best part of the day… Ian found SALLY…his salamander … In his words

“We just pulled her back leg for the first time and and it went thpppp. We rolled her over and I looked down and my shoe made a puddle in the ground and there was a pink thing squirming around and I picked it up and put it in my pocket…SALLY!!”

The Un Cola

What A difference a year makes…

Pittsburgh Hospital for Children 011The date of this picture is wrong it should be 03.31.2012

Last year right after Easter, we were finally bringing home Eli after God touched and healed him in the hospital…right there…


We made a trip to Children’s Hospital April 2 to see about Eli getting circumcised. Who knew?? At his age, it would require general anesthetic. Because of his history of aspiration, respiratory failure and who knows what else as a risk factor, they would only do the operation at Children’s Hospital… just in case ( In case what??)…a few stitches and black and blue…As the doctor described his particular risks…my throat closed up…


After a very short discussion after meeting with the surgeon, Ray and I decided…no way. Not for something cosmetic, we could not risk it. So he will forever be the uncola. Did any of you know that? Wow, so the choice of the staff at the first children’s hospital to not do the circumcision at the time of birth resulted in …. This choice, which really was not much of a choice was it?


The whole time we were at the Children’s Hospital, Eli had this look of strain and stress. Must have been the lighting and the atmosphere, he knew…this was the place where he struggled between life and death…and Life won!!

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