Jumble of words

Saw the following picture on our screensaver this morning.

(Our screensaver scrolls through the photos I’ve uploaded on the computer)

Grandson helping dad and grandpa cut wood with his chainsaw

Kasen was born with an extra  Chromosome 21

(Down Syndrome)


My mind is a jumble of  words when I see that picture.

95% positive

I am so thankful my daughter and her husband did not choose to end his life while he was still in the womb.  6 out of 10 babies diagnosed with down syndrome never make it out of the womb alive here in America.   The odds are even worse in Europe (9 out of 10)

Kasen is as much a part of  our family as any of us.

The Thanksgiving holiday here in America  is day after tomorrow.  Wishing all of you that stay in touch with me on a regular basis here via my blog(s) a great day…and if you lived locally I would invite you to join us for lunch.

I really would…

Then you could meet Kasen  🙂  and the rest of clan.

Take care. DM


Making diamonds

I love hearing stories about what my kids are up to…heard this one this morning. DM


“We decided to move our business here because of you!”  the young woman told my daughter yesterday with a grin.

(Daughter works behind the counter @ a local pharmacy.)

Daughter didn’t know who this person was, and had a puzzled look on her face.

Lady smiled and continued…

“Well, we are new to the community, and you stopped by where I work back on March 21st in celebration of World Down Syndrome Day, with those lottery tickets.  Your attitude really touched me.  I asked you if you  worked outside the home and mentioned you worked here…  My husband and I wanted to start doing business here because of you.”

Three years ago, our third grandchild was born.

Shortly after his birth, it was determined he had Down Syndrome.   The first several weeks of his life  were touch and go.  Even to this day, there are medical issues he is having to deal with related to Downs….

None of us really know how we will respond to  life’s challenges until we are in the middle of it.  Our daughter and her husband have decided to  celebrate the birth of their little boy by passing out lottery tickets in honor of him and raise awareness of those who have been blessed by down syndrome each March 21st.  (Those are her words)

Kasen celebrated his third birthday last week.  He is a hoot.  Loves to hang out with his dad, and grandpa when they cut firewood. He loves to sit on my lap and listen to Scottish drum music. His dad is a fire fighter, Kason has already been adopted by the local fire department as one of their own.


Kasen during one of his stays in the  Intensive Care Unit

Kasen and his new toy chainsaw


Life is good.

If you don’t want to watch all 9 minutes of that Scottish drum music (see link)  jump ahead to about 7 minutes…that last song is Kasen and my favorite. 😉 DM


Here and now I’m in the fire,
In above my head
Oh, oh, oh oh, oh, oh
Being held under the pressure,
Don’t know what’ll be left
Oh, oh, oh oh, oh, oh
But it’s here in the ashes
I’m finding treasure

He’s making diamonds, diamonds
Making diamonds out of dust
He is refining in his timing
He’s making diamonds out of us”

From the song Diamonds by Hawk Nelson

Another Kathy Story…


Kathy was going through the checkout line  at the local grocery store last week.  Jerry (a young man with downs syndrome) works there part-part time, and  helped her with her groceries.  Kathy slipped him a couple of dollars for a tip and told him to keep it quiet.  😉 He kissed her hand, winked and said “Thank you mam!”

The next part of this story involves their local fire department.

Kathy’s husband, and father in law are both on their local volunteer fire department. After Kasen was born with downs syndrome, the guys from the department took a special liking in him.

I guess a few months ago, one of the fireman had stopped by the grocery store.  Jerry spotted his blue fireman’s t-shirt and  wished  out loud he had one.

Well, yesterday was the big day…  both Kasen and Jerry were  presented with their very own dark blue fireman’s t-shirts.

Jerry  even got to suit up.

Here’s a couple of action shots from the day:

kasen and Jerry

Jerry and Kasen

fireman2 - Copy

There is a magical happiness that many of those with downs syndrome seem to possess.  Couldn’t help but think of a movie we watched last year when I heard about Jerry….

Have you seen Where Hope Grows?  It is powerful. DM


Had some snuggle time with three grand babies yesterday..Owen, Alcina, and Kasen.   (Our extended family got together for a Thanksgiving meal.)

I am a rich man.

Kasen, who turned one this past June,  was born with an extra chromosome.

When Kasen arrived at my sisters house, he was all  smiles,  doing some  sign language,  army crawling,  playing catch with a tiny brown, soft rubber football, etc.   One of the characteristics of Downs Syndrome children is they tend to be happy and good-natured.   This is not a hard and fast rule but Kasen definitely falls into that camp.

As our Thanksgiving family time began to wind down, I got down to play with Kasen one more time before it was time  to go.  His eyes teared up, and his smile vanished.

At first I thought, maybe I’d startled him, so I passed him over to Uncle Steve..I didn’t want to be the bad guy . 😉

Daughter Kathy informed us, it was way past Kasen’s nap time, and he was getting fussy.

I was relieved to know I hadn’t brought it on, it was simply time for him to take a break.

As upbeat and positive as Kasen  normally is…there is a limit.

Read a true story yesterday about a family who lost their only son because of a freak accident in a high school football game.  The dad recounted how afterwards, he was so beside himself with grief, that for days he could not even get out of bed..and there were several weeks he could not even go back to work.  (that is not the first time I’ve read about someone unable to get out of bed as they were broadsided by a loss)…  (I take notes on stuff like this, because it helps me to understand the wide range of what are normal human reactions to life experiences.)

Not sure where you are at as you’re reading this..but if you’re not you’re normal upbeat self,  I am pretty sure Kasen would tell you (if he could) that maybe it’s nap time?

Or, maybe because of what you have had on your plate, you’ll need to take a whole day, or week, or longer  to recover….

There is no shame in getting grumpy.  It means you are alive.


Picture of Kasen when he’s on his game.