Saturday, May 30, 2009

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition

Extreme Makeover is apparently looking for a family in central NY to do a home makeover for. One of Mom's friends posted the article on one of her yahoo groups. They were asking for a e-mail about the family, instead of that agonizingly long and detailed application. So, I sent one in. Here it is, in all it's glory, without a few things I wish I would have added...

My name is Bonnie, I'm 24 years old and a widowed Mama of 3 children and 2 stepchildren, all under the age of 5 years. My husband Anthony passed away over one year ago of a subdural hematoma, a bleed in his brain, a week before his 30th birthday.

I met Anthony when I was just 18, and I knew the very first time that he kissed me that he was my forever love. For our first date, he packed a gorgeous picnic lunch, and we ate passion fruit and pineapple off gold-edged plates, relaxing in the shade of the willow trees by a lake. Just days later, we took a day trip to NYC to see David Letterman. Lost in NYC traffic, we were too late to see the show, but instead ended up in Central Park. We were holding hands, walking under a bridge at dusk, when he asked me if I would be his forever. At that very moment the park lights came on, basking the greenery in a soft glo. It was a magical moment. Two years from that date he proposed to me with a 25 cent gumball machine ring, we were too broke for a real ring but he wanted something to put on my finger. One year later, we were married on a lighted bridge at sunset, reminicent of the day in Central Park when he stole my heart for good. In our terribly short 5 years together, we had our share of ups and downs, made some poor choices, and spent a bit of time apart, but never did we lose hope... we knew our love was eternal. During those years, we welcomed 5 beautiful children into the world. I could not picture my life without him, I didn't want to, and we were lucky enough, our love was strong enough, that we were able to make everything work.

That Sunday was scheduled as our joint birthday party, and I spent the Saturday before it getting ready for the big day. I went out shopping, picked him up a few small things, and ordered his gift online when I got home. That night, we ordered pizza for dinner, gave the kids a bath and put them to bed, and watched a movie together. At around 11:30, I handed him our very awake 8 week old daughter, kissed him goodnight, and went to bed. At 6:30 on Sunday morning, my world came crashing down around me. I woke to find Anthony in bed next me, breathing strangely and unresponsive. In a matter of seconds, before I could process what was happening, he stopped breathing and went limp. I called 911 and performed CPR until the medics arrived, our 3 year son watching everything from the doorway. They worked on him for over an hour but there was nothing they could do. All I could think, once I managed to stop screaming, was what am I going to tell my poor babies?? Time stood still for over a week as I did things no 22 year old should have to do, calling his mom and dad to tell them what happened, informing his friends and family of our tradgedy, making funeral arrangements, and writing a eulogy for my beautiful and perfectly healthy 29 year old husband... it just didn't seem real, and to this day, there are times I still can't believe it. The Monday of his funeral was the worst day of my life, I honestly did not think I was going to live to put my kids to bed that night. His birthday present was delivered as I dressed our kids for their father's funeral.

Somehow, through the grace of God, we all survived that horrific time in our lives, and we're still here, chugging along, doing the best we can.

Anthony's death left me in a very awkward position, not knowing where to stand in the lives of my 2 stepsons. Although they resulted from a less than ideal situation, I love them as my own and have taken on responsibility and joint custody, and they will always be a part of my family. I love them with all my heart and I am grateful their mother and I have been able to work together in parenting these boys.

With no income to speak of, no way to pay for daycare, no way to support my own children, my mother took us in, opening her doors, her arms, and her heart to us all. She has been there for us in more ways than I can describe, supporting us on her single income while I stay home with the kids and continue my education online so that one day I can do this on my own. While her arms and her heart are more than big enough for all of us, this house is not. It is not safe or sound, especially for the kids. The roof is leaking terribly and we've had to cut out pieces of sheet rock from the attic ceiling to let the insulation drip dry because we can't afford to replace it, the basement is wet and moldy, and the foundation and supports of the house are failing to the point that our floors are sloping. We have a huge maple tree in the backyard that has been discolored down the trunk for quite some time, it looses large limbs in every storm and we're terrified it's going to fall on the house at some point. Living here is our only option at this point, and although the kids don't know any better, my mom and I are scared because we know this house isn't safe.

We're not really heroes, we donate to Toys For Tots every Christmas, and we give blood when we can find the time. Our valiant efforts all happen here, in this house, trying our best to raise these kids to be respectful, responsible, resourceful people who will remember their Daddy for the wonderful and loving man he was. Although so many people call me "SuperMom", and I hear almost every day that people just can't understand how I do it all... I do what I have to do, because I love my kids and they need me now more than ever. When I'm feeling particularly down, I always hear how inspired people are by our story, by our ability to keep going even though life has dealt us a less than ideal hand. I know that our property isn't the type usually chosen, either, we don't have a huge lot or a gorgeous neighborhood. But we need the help, so desperately that I'm getting goosebumps as I write this because I just know that at some point, *something* good has to come from this horrible, still unthinkable situation. I feel in my heart that our story would truly touch the hearts of others :)


Anthony and I used to watch Extreme Makeover Home Edition almost every week, grateful that the help was there for the people in need. Now, we need your help. Please, ABC, help us make this house a safe home for these beautiful kids to grow up in!!!!!

Please see the attached photos...

Bonnie Isaac and Sandra Fuller
14 Margaret st
Johnson City NY 13790
607-217-5921
607-206-7101


mom Bonnie Isaac 3/12/85 24 years old
'Gramma" Sandra Fuller 3/2/60 49 years old

son Dominick 'Rayce' Jovan Isaac 8/21/04 almost 5 years old
stepson Holden Jet Kavi Isaac 3/7/06 3 years old
daughter Talia 'Charlize' Calista Isaac 6/15/06 almost 3 years old
stepson Dante Bowen Skylar Towle 2/5/07 2 years old
daughter Liliya Marin Corrin Isaac 1/11/08 16 months old



If you feel that we're deserving and 'fit the bill', it would be wonderful to have nominations from friends or family...

"Extreme Makeover" looking for Ithaca-area familyLast Update: 5/27 12:49 pm Print Story Share this Story [SetText Size Small] [Set Text Size Medium] [Set Text Size Large] [SetText Size X-Large] [(WSYR NewsChannel 9 )] (WSYRNewsChannel 9 ) Ithaca (WSYR-TV) -

They had such a good time in CentralNew York last August, the cast and crew of "Extreme Makeover HomeEdition" want to return.

"We are looking for the deserving people and inspiring families thatAmerica can really root for," says Casting Supervisor Morgan Fahey.What does it take to be picked for an Extreme Makeover?

"We're lookingfor those special people who have amazing strength of character andnever give up. Whether it's keeping their chin up in really toughcircumstances or going out of their way to help others. We want to helppeople whose stories have really affected their community or made a bigdifference in other people's lives." Fahey added: "There are a lotof people who are heroes to those around them because of the way theyinspire others and quietly serve their communities on a daily basis.

"The Extreme Makeover: Home Edition producers are looking for familieswhose homes desperately need to be rebuilt. "We really want to helpfamilies whose homes present major problems for the family, those bigissues that affect the family's quality of life on a daily basis. Wewant to find deserving people who just don't have the resources,ability, or time to fix those serious issues without our help.

"To be eligible, a family must own their own single family home and be able to show producers how a makeover will make a huge difference intheir lives.

Interested families should e-mail a short description of their family story to: castnewyork@gmail.com mailto:castingky@gmail.com

Nominations may be submitted by the family or by a member of theircommunity. Each nomination must include the names and ages of everymember of the household along with a description of the major challengeswithin the home. Anyone submitting a nomination should be sure toexplain why the nominated family is deserving, heroic, and/or a greatrole model for their community. If possible, include a recent photo ofthe family. All nominations must include a contact phone number.

The deadline for nominations is June 9, 2009. Don't delay!

For more information on how to apply please visit our website at:http://abc.go. com/primetime/ xtremehome/ index?pn= apply<http://abc.go. com/primetime/ xtremehome/ index?pn= apply>

Monday, May 25, 2009

Keeping busy!

Busy as bees!!

Along with babysitting my 2 nephews comes more work and less time and opportunity to get out of the house and get things done. It's been a challenge, to say the least, but it's nice that the kids get to spend so much time together and it's nice that I get to see my sisser almost every day, even if only for a few minutes!!

I've been trying to think of things I can do with the kids, here at home, to stimulate their little minds on a more regular basis. Needless to say, they spend wayyyy too much time in front of the tv. The weather's cooperation the last couple of weeks has helped a lot! The kids have been outside for most of the day, every single day. Jumping on the trampoline, playing on the swingset and climber, digging in the dirt, splashing in the kiddie pool... they've been having a *blast* and getting filthy by lunchtime every day. Have I mentioned that having an almost completely shaded yard is very nice, because the kids don't get sunburned and it stays much cooler out there?!?!

What about those rainy days, though?!?! I've been dreading the rain, because it means the kids will be stuck inside!!!

Tonight I was browsing the TLC/Discovery Health website and I found a website loaded with craft ideas!!!

http://home.howstuffworks.com/family-kids-crafts.htm

It looks really neat, and I am excited to try some of the crafts out!



Rocking Rock Pets, Thummies thumbprint animals... they all look fairly simple and very fun!

Holden turned 3 in March, Charlize will be 3 next month, and Jonathan will be 3 the following month... it's time to get working on the preschool activities!!

I've got the most wonderful curriculum idea book, "The Complete Resource Book for preschoolers" by Pam Schiller and Kay Hastings (thank you again, soooo much, Susan, I am still pouring through this book soaking in all these wonderful ideas!!!), and I'm going to begin using these ideas with the kids!!!







It's never too early to give the kiddos a leg up and keep the gears in their little minds turning!!!

Friday, May 22, 2009

The pics :)


They found a catterpillar!
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Jeremiah, 3 months old!!
Jeremiah
Jeremiah
Charlize and Liliya, sisterly love :)
Charlize,Liliya
Jon, Dante, Charlize, Holden, Rayce
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Dante
Dante
Liliya
Liliya
Charlize
Charlize
Ice cream on a hot afternoon :)
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Charlize
Charlize
Liliya
Liliya
Dante and Holden, inspecting the bug life
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Dante
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posing *just* like his Daddy
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Holden
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Rayce
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Jonny
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Charlize
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Mama and Bubbaroo
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Dante
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Liliya
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Holden
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Charlize
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Pictures!!

I snapped pictures to my little heart's content this morning, and boyyy oh boyyyy did I get some gorgeous shots!! I'm waiting for them up to upload right now, I'l be posting some by tonight!! :)

Some days, it seems to take *forever* to get anything done around here. To get 5 kids up, fed, changed, dressed, hair fixed (for the ONE kid with enough hair to fix!), and slathered in sunscreen... it took almost an hour. Then we still had to find shoes/sandals so they could go outside!! We got up at 7:45 and it was 2 hours later by the time we made it outside!!

The kids played in the backyard allll morning, had lunch on the deck at their picnic table (strawberry jam sandwiches and sliced apples:), then I filled the pool up on the deck so they wouldn't be able to get the water soooo dirty so fast! It worked well! They still got to play but the dirt wasn't right next to them, tempting them, calling their names...

"Ohhhhhh kids, here I am!! Why don't you grab a handfull and throw it in the water?! We'll mix and make muuuuddddd! You know how much you love to play in the muddd!!!"

I'm hoping to make the consignment shop rounds during the next week, to look for sneakers, sandals, and possibly some winter clothes in the next sizes up (fall is only a couple months away!) if they have anything out.

Jeremiah is up from his nap, time for a dipey change and a bottle!

:)

Godspeed

I heard this song years ago, before I had any kids, and its beauty brought tears to my eyes.

"Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)"
Dragon tales and the "water is wide"
Pirate's sail and lost boys fly
Fish bite moonbeams every night
And I love you
Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Sweet dreams
The rocket racer's all tuckered out
Superman's in pajamas on the couch
Goodnight moon, will find the mouse
And I love you
Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Sweet dreams
God bless mommy and match box cars
God bless dad and thanks for the stars
God hears "Amen," wherever we are
And I love you
Godspeed, little man
Sweet dreams, little man
Oh my love will fly to you each night on angels wings
Godspeed
Godspeed
Godspeed
Sweet dreams

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Whew!

It's been a looooong day!! The kids have been outside literally ALLLL day, they were filthy, covered in dirt from head to toe and back again!

I have to say, having a fenced in backyard is the most wonderful thing when you have kiddos this age. It has been a God-sent! We are lucky enough to have gotten a little swing set for free from Craig's List, a big huge trampoline from Grampa and Mima, a cube climber from FreeCycle, and a mini climber just the right size for Liliya from TeTe (Pauline).

We don't have much grass at all yet. The backyard had become a jungle/dog run from all the years of neglect and doggie love. We've put a lot of work into it so far and there's still so much to be done! But, it'll get there. There is no doubt in my mind that by next summer, it'll be a wonderfully green and delightful place for the kids to play (and they won't be able to get quite as dirty once we have a yard full of grass rather than dirt!!).

Next spring Grampa and Mima are buying the kids a wonderful and huge wooden swing set!!! I am sooo excited, I have big plans. I want to put the swingset sideways along the 'line' from the inside edge of the garage to the back fence, put a small border around it, and fill it with mulch or pebbles, I haven't decided yet. It'll be like a real playground! The swingset we picked out is sooo awesome, it has several swings, a big slide, a 'rock-climbing' wall, a picnic table, a fort, and a sandbox area!! It's great, I am soooo excited for it, even though it's a year away!

Rayce went with Gramma tonight to a softball game. The girls and I went to pick Holden and Dante up, then we swang by McDonald's for some ice cream. They played outside for a little while more and then I threw all of them in the bathtub.

Our bathtub has never seen so much dirt!! After the water drained, the bottom was still *covered* in a layer or dirt, it was sooo gross!! I mean, I know that bathtubs are for cleaning people off... but WOW!!

THAT is how much the kids have been enjoying the backyard and this (finally) *beautiful* weather!!

Tomorrow is supposed to be just as beautiful, we're going to fill up the kiddie pool and let the kiddos create a mudpuddle with it (that's just what they do, dump buckets of dirt into the pool to make mud!).

Man these kids love dirt!

Thank heaven for running water and baby wash!!!

Gonne be a busy day tomorrow, my 3, my 2 stepkids, and my 2 nephews... 7 kids all under the age 5!!! Wish me luck!!

nephew jonny, passed out!

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

May 2009 pictures


My sweet Liliya :) Liliya

Photobucket Cheesey boy Rayce.

The Mama and the ferret. Photobucket

Photobucket Sage and Cinnamon!

These 2 trees across the street look like a heart... so pretty!Photobucket

Photobucket Spring at last!! Ice cream at the picnic table on the deck!! :-D

These kiddos looooove the dirt! Photobucket

Photobucket Lunch time!! Round em up!

Samson! pets

Holden Holden with a dirty face right after dinner :P

Dante has gotten really good at smiling pretty for the camera!! Dante

Charlize Charlize playing peek-a-boo under Mama's blankets.

The oldest 3 right before our trip to the circus!! Holden,Rayce,Charlize

Rayce,Holden,Charlize,circus They were spellbound :) We had our own circus act... you should have seen all 4 of us come out of one tiny bathroom stall, it was just like a dozen clowns climbing out of the clown car!!!