Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Time to play a little catch up...

Ok, ok.  I know I promised an update the other day, so here it is.  We here at the GFL have been super busy lately.  As I mentioned previously, Robbie and I, along with a few of our friends, have started a company known as Swampfox Media, LLC.  We managed to publish the first issues of our first 3 comicbook titles last month!  Our first 3 titles are Heralds & Heretics, No Rest For the Wicked, and Compendium.  All 3 titles are available for sale through our website ( and for digital download through DriveThru Comics.  We're currently working on the second issues of each title, as well as some children's books!

Robbie and I got to go to the New York Comic Con (NYCC) and to the XCon in Myrtle Beach, SC.  Both were a blast!!  The NYCC was crazy!  It's so huge, with so many vendors, gamers, etc!  We were very thankful to Victor Dandridge (from Vantage:Inhouse Productions) for the use of his table for 2 hrs.  Robbie and our partner, Lee, did about 5 interviews with magazines, radio, and bloggers.  It was such an experience.  The XCon in Myrtle Beach was also very cool!  It's a MUCH smaller venue, but that had its perks as well.  We had the chance to meet with some comic icons, folks from DC and Marvel, as well as Bob Camp (Ren & Stimpy, Thundercats, GI Joe....basically anything great from the 80s/early 90s!!).  Since it was such a smaller venue, we really got a chance to pick the brains of other artists, inkers, publishers, etc.  All in all, both were great experiences.

Now its back to work, and back to regular life.  We're still working on Swampfox Media, we've managed to launch the live website, added a new webcomic--"General Snobbery" by our web guru Adams, started the online store, and even worked on making our Facebook page a little more exciting.  We've met tons of people, and had a great time doing it.  Robbie has found another job, in the meantime, and is working about 30-40 hrs a week.  While its been nice not having him work so many hours, the pay cut is killing us.  I've had to start looking for a job too.  :(  I hate the thought of going back to work, but I hate the idea of being on the street even more! lol!  Oh well.

That's pretty much the update on our life with Swampfox Media.  Making comics, going to conventions, meeting new people, and learning a lot!!  I'll try to be better about updating in the future.  I've also updated a few times on my other blog, Amazing Atticus, about how our 3rd little guy is doing.  We're getting closer to his 3rd open heart surgery, so feel free to pop over to his blog to get the details.  Well, that's about it for now.  Time to hit the bed early, so I can wake up early and get busy cooking!!  From all of us here at the GFL, we hope you and your family all have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Victorian Rose Soap Company

Wow....I just realized how very long its been since I updated this blog.  I know I'm way overdue for some new stories, events, etc!  I promise to play catch up with the rest of this year soon!  We at the GFL have been super busy with starting our company, Swampfox Media, so I'll have lots of cool stories, including a trip to NYCC and XCon!  (What does that mean?....wait until the update!)

Today I just wanted to let everyone know about a great giveaway that our friends over at the Victorian Rose Soap Company are having!  These ladies are having a Christmas Giveaway of their fabulous, handmade soaps!  Click on the link to get full details and have your own chance to enter!  Then, be sure to browse around her catalog and look at all the different lovely products they have!  You might just be able to get all you Christmas shopping done in one place!!  Good luck! 

Monday, May 30, 2011

Hello again.....'s been a little while since I posted anything, and so much has happened since my last post.  First, I guess I'll start by saying, Happy Memorial Day!!  Thank you to all the men and women that have given their lives for the sake of our country and our freedoms.  They have all written a blank check to the US Gov't, and paid it with their lives.  Saying "thank you" is the least I can do.

Now, on to updating!  Well, shortly after my last post, my husband was laid off from his job.  It's not really a bad thing....he was working 70+ hrs a week, was constantly on the phone with his store, the owner was always mad about something and telling him he wasn't doing enough, etc.  So when Mr L had to lay off one of the managers, Robbie pretty much jumped at the chance.  Since then, it's been nice having the hubbie at home all the time, but its making me horribly slack since I'm always hanging out with him instead of doing housework!  LOL! 

Around Easter, all sorts of things just started falling into place, and we decided to go into business for ourselves.  Along with a few of our friends, we have officially launched Swampfox Media, LLC!  We have 3 titles launching on Oct 31st....Heralds & Heretics, Compendium, and No Rest For the Wicked.  I'm really excited about these projects, and I've been overloaded with tasks to help get the business stuff in order.  The other folks are pretty much the creative ones.....I'm the secretary/accountant/any of the "boring stuff" person. Hahaha, at least I'm needed!  :)  We're still getting the website ready, but be sure to keep a lookout for it!  You'll be able to keep tabs on our upcoming projects at so be sure to bookmark it and check back soon!  Well, that's the shortened version of what we've been up to for the last few months.  In fact, Robbie's bugging me with some paperwork I need to get I guess that will have to be it for now!  I'll try to keep you all updated on the happenings, as well as the stories of the family soon!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Gideon's 4th Birthday!!

Sooooo, bet you can guess what this post is going to be about, huh?  Yep, today was Gideon's 4th Birthday!  We had a great day.  It began at around a quarter to 9am (thank you, Daylight Savings Time), when Gideon, Sandy, and my nephew (who had spent the night) came bursting into our bedroom, with all the excitement that morning seems to bring when you're under the age of 10.  The children, of course, never bother to try to wake up Daddy (a lesson in futility learned at an early age), so they all came clamoring over to me for juice and breakfast.  I smiled and reminded them that today was Gideon's birthday!  At which point, Gideon burst into a big smile, grabbed my arm and said, "It's my birthday?  (I nodded.)  It's a FLURBLE birthday!", and promptly "flurbbled" my arm.  (Now, you might be wondering...."What the heck is a "flurble?", and I can't blame you.  It's the name we given to a little game we play where you place your open mouth on someone's exposed skin and then blow out.  It makes a sort of "farting" sound and sort of might have your own name for said game....or not, but the kids love it! lol)  I couldn't help but laugh and got up to get the day started.

After breakfast and all of Atticus' morning meds, etc, we all started getting ready to go to Chuck E Cheese's (CEC) per the request of Gideon.  He had been looking forward to CEC for about a month, as most any child that has EVER been to one usually does.  The funny thing is that what Gideon had been looking forward to was not the pizza, not even the wide variety of games, but for 1 game in particular.  This particular CEC has a Spongebob Squarepants Bowling Game.  And for the last month, I've heard nothing but how Gideon was going to play that game when he went to CEC!!  And boy did he!  And what's even funnier, is that he doesn't even want to play as Spongebob.  No, no, no.  Gideon's favorite character is Mr Krabs, SB's boss!  ROFL!!  He must have played that game for about an hour overall....for 30 minutes straight at one point!  But, to be fair, he probably won the most tickets (on his own) than any of the other two.  He kept getting strikes (7 tickets per) and spares (5 tickets per).  We even had to call the employees over to put more tickets in the machine so he could keep playing it!  I did eventually manage to chase him off it so some other kids could play.  He found a few other games and rides that he liked.....and then he found the Spongebob coin drop game and spent the last of his coins winning a few more tickets!  :)  Sandy, meanwhile, was running everywhere spending her coins on air hockey with my nephew, a Barney ride, a phone game, and whatever else grabbed her attention.  Atticus even managed to come with us, and we even got him out of the stroller long enough to let him ride some of the "baby" toys.  Of course...with my OCD,  I grabbed napkins and hand sanitizer and wiped down each ride and even the slide before I'd let him play on it! LOL!  (And all I can say is ewwwwwwww........)

After a few hours at CEC, we piled back into the car and headed home.  Grandma Hemrick picked up his cake for me and met us at the house, shortly after we got back from CEC.  I was so happy with his cake.  It looked and tasted great.  One of Gideon's other favorite characters is Super Why (with the Power to Read!) from PBS.  The local bakery had a Super Why design and Gideon LOVED it!  Before we dived into the cake though, we let him go ahead and open his presents.  Gideon is on a big "robot" kick right now....and he had a robot birthday.  Robot blankets, robot sheets, robot socks, a little robot, a big robot, robot wall stickers, robots, robots, robots!!  And he loved all of it.  He also got some Super Why stickers and a movie, and a tracing book, and a plane, so a pretty good birthday overall!  Then the kids all played with his new toys, and Gideon and I put up his new robot wall stickers, and I washed his new sheets so he could put them on his bed.  The adults talked for a while, and then all the grandmas and aunts went home.  We put Gideon's new robot sheets on his bed, and put everyone to sleep.

I'm so thankful for my sweet little Gideon.  He really is a great little boy.  He's the quite comparison only.  He can definitely be loud when he gets in the mood.  He's also very smart, though he took so long to talk--he really surprises you with how much he actually knows and understands!  And even though his name means "the hewer, the bruiser, the destroyer" in Hebrew--and he can be--he's really a gentle soul, quick to forgive and quick to love.  He's a comedian and a prankster.  He loves music and to dance....especially like a robot!  He was my biggest baby, weighing in at 10lbs 4.2oz and 20.25 inches long (and no....I didn't have a C-section....) and sometimes he still is.  And even when he's rotten, I wouldn't trade him for anything in this world.  Happy Birthday, Gideon!  I love you!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Going to the circus!!

So, its been a minute since I really had anything to post.  Mostly we've just all been fighting off one virus, then another, then the flu, so there really hasn't been anything exciting going on here at the GFL.  Until this past Friday.  That's when Sandy, Gideon and I went with my sister and nephew to go see the circus!

We had a great time!  It's been 2 years since anyone got to go to the circus.  Last year no one ended up going because of everything that was going on with Atticus, and the year before that, I stayed home with Gideon, who was too young to go.  So not only was it Gideon's first trip to the circus, but my first trip with the kids as well!  We went early enough to get there for all the pre-show stuff.  We wandered around to find our seats, then we took the kids down to the floor (after searching for the entry way for about 10 minutes!) where they got to see some clowns, dance, and walk on a tightrope!  Then the kids decided that they were ready to sit down, so we headed back up to the mezzanine.  We took everyone potty, grabbed everyone a souvenir so that there would be no whining during the show, and headed to our seats.  While my sister sat with the kids, I headed back out to grab a few snacks to munch on during the show.  After all, what's a circus without some popcorn and cotton candy?!

The kids were great during the show.  They 'oo'ed and 'ahh'ed at the acrobats.  They laughed and giggled at the clowns.  They watched intently at the parade of elephants, dogs, cats, exotic birds, and lions as they went through their various tricks.  They marveled at the ringmaster's magic tricks.  (Though after each one, Sandy would turn to me and say, "That's not REAL magic, Mom.  It's just an illusion....but it was a pretty good trick!!"  LOL!  We had talked about "magic" in its various forms--from Harry Potter to street magicians--only a few weeks before, and she wanted to make sure that I knew she'd been listening.)  And during the intermission--while they got the ring ready for the lions--the kids chattered non-stop about what they'd just witnessed.

We snuck out in the last minute of the show, so that we could beat the crowd to the bathroom, swung by one last souvenir counter to grab a little something for Atticus, and headed outside.  We ran into some friends who were there with their children, so we chatted for a few minutes while we waited for the traffic to clear out of the parking lot.  They have a son and daughter that are the same age as Sandy and Gideon, and the five kids spent the time chasing each other, showing off their souvenirs, and talking about the circus.  Once the traffic had thinned out, we said good-bye to our friends, and headed back to the car.  My sister and nephew walked in front of us, and I asked Sandy and Gideon about their favorite moments as we made the short trip to where we had parked.  We set the various souvenirs in the truck of my sisters car, as the kids all sleepily crawled into their seats.  We made sure everyone was buckled up properly, then headed for home.  I think Gideon had passed out before we even left the parking lot.  Sandy and my nephew valiantly struggled to stay awake for a few more minutes, but eventually succumbed to slumber before we had even made it back to the highway.  It was only about 2 hours past their bedtime, after all.  We got back to my house, where my mom had been kind enough to stay with Atticus so that I could go with the kids.  We swapped quick pleasantries after getting Sandy and Gideon inside with their things, and then she got in the car with my sister to head back to their house.  All in all it was a great time with the kids, and we made some great memories that night.  :)

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Robbie and the kids

Hello everyone!  Sorry its been a little while since I wrote anything, but we've all been fighting a virus over here at the GFL, and I have been one busy mommy!  I actually wanted to dedicate this post to my wonderful hubbie, Robbie.  He's one of those 1 in a million type guys.  He certainly has his flaws (as we all do), but my life wouldn't be the same without him.  Specifically, I'd like to share about the special relationship that Robbie has with our kids.

First, let me say that Robbie adores the children.  And they absolutely love their Daddy!  I catch myself just watching them interact with one another.  I've said before that Robbie is quite the comedian.  The kids love it because they get to be absolutely ridiculous with him.  They'll call each other silly names like "You Peanut Butter Pickle!" or "You Tuba!" and just have fits of giggles.  Then Robbie will chase them around the house while they squeal at the top of their lungs (I swear, sometimes, I'm surprised the glasses don't all shatter!) and they try to hide from him.  He'll catch them, then wrestle them to the ground with tickles, while one will jump on his back trying to "defend" the other.  On the days that Robbie has to work doubles, he comes home on his break and just wears the older two kids out for me!

I don't think Robbie ever gets to work on time.  I believe its simply impossible.  Even if he tries to leave early, it never happens.  (Good thing he's the manager!)  There is quite the ritual that happens when its time for Daddy to go to work.  Sandy and Gideon race into the living room, each trying to reach him first.  He gives them each hugs and kisses, and usually several rounds of them!  Lol!  Then he usually ends us playing with them for just a few more minutes, chasing them around, or tickling them, etc.  This is usually followed by another few rounds of hugs and kisses, at which time he is inevitably late, and has to pry himself away before heading out the door.  (Don't worry, Atticus and I usually get our hugs and kisses first....before the thundering herd comes running down the hallway!) 

It's the same story when it comes to bedtime.  Robbie is always at work when its time for bed, except for the occasional holiday when the store is closed.  But each night, I have to promise Sandy that I'll send him in to tell her goodnight whenever he comes home from work.  Gideon usually wakes up sometime around midnight to use the bathroom, and stumbles into the living room so that he can hug Robbie, and get him to carry him back to bed.

I know most of what I said above applies mostly to Sandy and Gideon, but Robbie also has a special relationship with Atticus.  We joke and say that Robbie finally got one of the children to look like him!  :)  Atticus is enamored with Robbie just like the other two children.  He always wants to be in the mix when he's wrestling with the older ones.  And Robbie makes sure to make some special time with Atticus too.  In fact, he has to be careful because he always ends up giving Atticus the hiccups from laughing too hard!  I had a realization about how sweet their connection was when the last time we visited the audiologist.  Even before Atticus got his hearing aids, he could hear Robbie's voice.  We found out later that he could hear a lot more low tones than we originally thought, which explains why he could hear Robbie, who has a very loud, deep voice.  I remembered that it was Robbie's voice that first made Atticus at ease when he first received his hearing aids.  He went incredibly stiff when Dr Little placed them in his ears for the first time, and you could tell the sudden ability to hear overwhelmed and scared him.  He sucked on his finger and looked around rigidly and nervously, until he looked over at Robbie, who smiled, and said "Hi Atticus!".  That's when Atticus broke out into a big smile.  He been able to hear Robbie's voice before, and now he could hear it even clearer, and it made everything ok.

Dad's are such an important role in a family, yet they don't get the type of recognition for their sacrifices that they deserve.  Great dads make all the difference in children's lives.  So if you know someone who is a great dad, be sure to tell them "Thanks!".  It'll make their day!  Until next time, that's all for now in the GFL!  :)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

CHD Awareness Week

Hello everyone!!  Well,  I know it's been a moment since I posted anything, so I figured now was as good a time as any!  First, let me start by saying....THE GREEN BAY PACKERS ARE SUPER BOWL XLV CHAMPIONS!!!!!!  Ahem.  Ok.  Now that that is out of the way....;).  Needless to say, it was a crazy afternoon/evening over here at the GFL this past Sunday as we watched the Green Bay Packers face off vs the Pittsburgh Steelers.  (Boo! Hiss!)  We had a great time, lots of friends, plenty of food, and lots of yelling and screaming!

The main focus of my post today, however, has to do with a subject that is near and dear to my heart.  February 7th- 14th is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week.  CHD strikes 1 in every 100 children.  It also takes twice as many young lives than any form of childhood cancer, yet receives 1/5th the funding of Pediatric Cancer.  My little Atticus is one of those 1 in 100.  (Technically, with his defect, he's about 1 in 10,000!)  Without the advances in research, particularly within the last 30 years, my sweet boy wouldn't be with me here today.  Having a child with CHD radically changes your world.  Every aspect of daily life takes on new challenges, but there is always hope.  Hope for the future, hope for advances in medicine, and hope for a cure.  I'd like to end this post with what I like to call the Heart Mama's Prayer.  I can't take credit as the author, but it certainly expresses EXACTLY how I feel.  Enjoy, and help spread awareness for these precious little babies!!

Heart Mama's Prayer:

I pray that no other parent shall have to hear those words "Congenital Heart Defect".

I pray that no other parent shall have to sacrifice time with their "healthy" children because you can't be in 2 places at once.

I pray that no other parent has to see their child eat with a tube because just sucking a bottle makes them tired and sick.

I pray that no other parent has to make the decision to have their child's chest cracked open and heart stopped.

I pray that no other parent has to endure the torture of seeing their child cry his eyes out, yet not hear a sound.

I pray that no other parent shall have to get instructions on how to hold their child - this should be instinct.

I pray that no other parent has an empty crib waiting for it's owner to come home from the hospital, if at all.

I pray that no other child should have to go through all this pain, yet still lose their fight in the end.

I pray for awareness.

I pray for research.

I pray for a cure.