Sunday, April 28, 2013

Firsts, Flames, & Falls

The Boy attended his First Communion last Saturday and, all warnings to the contrary, I did not burst into flames upon entering the church.  I will spare y'all my convoluted thoughts on religion, the Catholic one in particular, since it was his day and this is just a nice excuse to post some pictures.

Today we spent at the park taking pictures for the local Down syndrome calendar which is only relevant because the kids wore the same outfits today as they are here and nobody is allowed to notice (when I finally get around to posting them) the different between my iPhone photos and those from the nice lady's four figure camera.  

There was cake. 

The Girl was Very Excited about it.

I think forks are unnecessary too. 

It was also my MIL's birthday. 
Happy Birthday! 

The Boy and his Godparents.  

I may have not burst into flames but five minutes into the service The Girl took a header off Matt's lap and into a bible, giving herself this rather impressive shiner.   The jokes just write themselves around here, don't they?  The lady today assured me she could photoshop the remaining purple out.  Wouldn't want anyone thinking God had it in for my special angel.

P.S.  Matt would like to point out that The Girl was next to him, not on his lap, and it may have been a music book, not a bible, but my story is better so it stands.    

Monday, April 22, 2013

An 8:30 bedtime is normal, right?

Spring has dragged itself
Into view. I tire still and
am off to bed. 'Nite!

Friday, April 19, 2013

Checking In

I haven't had too much to say lately.  The weeks fly by.  I go to work, come home, feed and water the children, repeat, repeat, repeat.

That's not entirely true.  I've had LOTS to say about the death of Robert Ethan Saylor, mostly on FB.  I've spent an egregious amount of time, actually, writing letters, begging people to give a damn, and harassing the national Down syndrome advocacy groups into, you know, advocating.  I even joined Twitter (I know! Collect yourselves) to help with the #justiceforethan campaign (which is what yesterday’s post all about), but I wonder at my efforts.  I wonder why people with a national platform and easy access to media, like Albert & Deidre Pujols, Jamie Foxx, and John McGinley, people who know and love someone with Ds, can't even be bothered to direct their press agents to draft something up.  Meanwhile my house is filthy, I'm neglecting my employer, and I'm short on sleep.  Thanks for being patient with me here.

I did manage, however, to provoke THIS response from NDSC.  It has sadly since been taken down, but will forever after be known as The Hallmark Plan and I'm insanely proud of it.  Let no one doubt my ability to poke the bear into revealing his true colors.
(not my picture but my screen shot had too much work stuff on it.
Not that I was on FB during work hours, or anything)

Ridiculous, right?  You wouldn’t think the working mom with two kids should have to join Twitter when there are not one, but TWO national advocacy groups out there, but this what we’re dealing with.
What else?
  • Matt is Catholic and The Boy goes to Catholic school.  I have a lot of mixed feelings about this but he’s getting a good education… and will be confirmed tomorrow.  There will be cake.
  • There is a special place in hell for the people who decided those felt communion banners should be “family projects.”
  • The news is so heartbreaking – that little boy in Boston with his felt communion banner.  I just can’t…
  • This is completely inane, but do you remember the movie the Peacemaker?  It’s a popcorn action flick but I still remember this line:   …there are people out there who don't care about money, who don't give a damn about respect. People who believe the killing of innocent men and women is justified. For them it is about rage, frustration, hatred... they feel pain and they're determined to share it with the world.
  • I’ve been trying to take better care of myself.  Right now that means I’ve been using my cheap wrinkle cream every night.  Such an indulgence.  Isn’t vanity a sin?  I bet The Boy knows.
  • A while back my MIL gave me her fancy Mix Master with the bread kneading attachment thingy and I’ve become a little obsessed with making bread – French bread, regular white bread, focaccia with pesto and parmesan …. mmmm.
  • I was ready-ish to run a half marathon last month but it was cancelled due to blizzard and I think I’ve put on my shoes exactly twice since.  So much for taking care of myself.  And I’ve been eating a lot of bread.  Maybe my problem is a lack of vanity (& self respect & self control)?  But in some dark & twisted way this meme has me newly motivated and I think I’m going to finally sign up for a full 26.2 miler.  Fuck ALL the bullies.  I was toying with the idea of running one to celebrate my 40th year but… um….  Anyway, if I run the local fall race I’ll only be 3 months late. Wish me luck!

Thursday, April 18, 2013


Do you know why the Robert Ethan Saylor case is so disturbing? There are lots of links and blogs and articles out there, but here's the quick’n dirty version:

1. The officers’ unreasonable & disproportionate use of force.
This began when Ethan didn’t want to leave a movie theater. I don’t claim he had the right to stay, but his caretaker was nearby and his mother was on her way to intervene. There is no evidence *Ethan* became violent. He died over the price of a movie ticket.

2. The officers’ failure to respect the risks of positional asphyxia.
You cannot place handcuffed subjects face down. The risk of death in this position has been well known to law enforcement for decades but the officers did it anyway and Ethan died. That is textbook gross criminal negligence.

3. The Medical Examiner’s report blamed his death on Down syndrome.
The Attorney General of Maryland wrote, “The opinion of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner was that a 25 year Caucasian male, Robert Ethan Saylor, died of asphyxia, Down’s Syndrome [sic]… This individual was already compromised by his Down’s Syndrome.”
Down syndrome is NOT a cause of death.

4. The lack of an impartial unbiased grand jury hearing.
The same department that employs the officers investigated his death. There were 17 eye witnesses but not one of them testified in front of the grand jury. The jurors heard ONLY from the 3 officers & the Medical Examiner (the same one who cited Down syndrome as a cause of death). Do we know what happened? No. But neither does the grand jury. They failed to pursue charges.

5. The failure of the Department of Justice to open a civil rights case on Mr. Saylor’s death.
Following the grand jury hearing, the DOJ met with several national Ds groups; Lou Ruffino then said “We're trying to assess the situation and see how much "community tension" there is.”  Since when do civil rights depend on community tension? Do we really need to riot to get them to do their job?

6. The “training” issue.
Several groups have mentioned additional training as a salve but this provides no justice for the family and simply emphasizes the “difference” that is Down syndrome. No officer can be trained on every contingency with every type of disability - but they can be expected to act proportionately & with common sense. These officers have neither and do not deserve to patrol Maryland's streets or interact with its children.

If this disturbs you, there are two (yes, I know, sorry) petitions you can sign at and You can email or mail form letters from here, or tweet #justiceforethan to anyone you think might give a damn. Thanks.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


A thousand faces,
My girl in spring, dancing to
her own song, trumpets.