…and the good news is my house didn’t burn down yet

It’s late and I’m exhausted. My kids coughed themselves to sleep and I’m too anxious to try and go to bed.

Turn on the national news and when you hear about the fires think of this family as lucky…so far. We are in our home. I have a laundry basket filled with essentials by my front door.

The air conditioning is on by recommendation of the authorities and we’re staying off the local roads unless we’re in an evacuation zone.

My son is coughing, but not badly. Meds and the indoor air are keeping him breathing without trouble. As I type this, a fourth fire has sprung up just miles from us.

If you are keeping track, we have one fire less than a mile to our northwest, we have another fire about 8 miles to our north, we have another fire about 3 miles to our east, and yet one more now to the southest that is about 4 miles away.

We could leave but hotels from San Diego to us are booked, not to mention the cost of missing work and staying away from home. We are not in an evacuation zone and authorities are advising we stay put and stay out of their way.

Protecting my kids is not an easy call today. Do we flee and risk sitting in traffic with horrible air quality and my son’s asthma? Do we stay put until the wind shifts and we are threatened directly? Do we get our butts to lax and make an impromptu trip to Nana’s house? Do we sit and wait?

We have had offers from friends that are just amazing. People are really wonderful. Homes to stay in, beds to lay on, tickets to Florida. The phone has been ringing non stop and the outpouring of concern is just overwhelming. Thank you all.

There have been many challenges this week. Making me really think and making me really take into account what I have. I have really good friends. I have a community of parent bloggers that I can count on. That I can share with. That I can relate to and help. I wouldn’t change them for the world, or for anyone. My children have seen the benefits of this community as well. My son’s allergies and asthma was helped by tips you all gave me. I got help for my PPD and become a better mother with your help. I’m proud of the community we’ve created and angry that a small percentage of people would attempt to intimidate or silence those of us who have gained so much through parent blogging. We’ve created a voice that is changing parenthood and I’m glad we can use our free speech as we engage in this new social medium. As we share photos and stories and advice and become virtual neighbors.  As we empower ourselves with books and opportunities and power.

I spent 72 hours attempting to make contact, personally, to discuss these challenges with certain people and have been met with no response. So publicly now I ask for the copyrighted photo of my minor daughter to be removed immediately.

There is a firestorm outside my door.


  1. I am a lurker and a parent blogger. I read your blog constantly as well as many of other you have alluded to. I have also been thinking about your family and the fires. I lived in So Cal for years and have a family and friends who live their still from Santa Barbara to Carlsbad. I hope you all make it through this unscathed. Fire is as destructive as those who create “fires” trying to prove points. I hope there is a resolution to the photo incident as it really was done in poor taste.

    You’re awesome as is this great community of changing the world view, parent bloggers. Keep fighting the good fight and don’t let the fire keep you from protecting yours.

  2. I hope the fires get no closer to you and yours. I think about all the displaced families and my heart goes out to them.

  3. You are a rock star, and I’m proud to be one of the people you count in the community of friends.

    I’m hoping the fires stay far away from your house, and that J’s asthma doesn’t flare up from the smoke and polluted air. You’re always welcome in Ohio, you know. (Columbus, that is.)

    Fire is also cleansing and allows for new growth. Stay safe and hope for new growth all around you, with as little damage as possible. You’re a strong woman, and one tough mama bear.

  4. My son would be having some serious coughing as well. I think of you up and unrested with that short, chortled cough I know you’re hearing and am saying prayers for your family’s protection. A hedge – I’m praying a hedge around your community.

    I too wouldn’t get in a car until the very last moment. My son would have to have a nebulizer to make it through the murk outside of your door.

    I feel so naive as to the recent events with stolen photos and “violent” acts. I hope your child’s photo is removed soon.

  5. When I’ve been thinking of you the last few days–which has been OFTEN, especially since I get all the major networks via satellite out of the LA area and have been glued to your local news–my main concern has been for your BREATHING. I just can’t imagine, as I sit here recovering from pneumonia under clear, smoke-free skies, how you’re able to breathe right now, and I worry. I wish I could airlift you out of there until it’s safe and clean again. If there is anything I CAN do, I hope you won’t hesitate to let me know.

    As for the other “thing,” I’m sure you already know how much more value you add to your virtual community than someone who exists merely to mock and tear down what other people build up.

  6. I too hope those fires stay away. I honestly can not even fathom the enormity of the fires–television offers no perspective.

    Stay safe.

  7. We have a pretty allergy safe home with no carpet and no fires. If you want to make a trip here, you are always welcome.

    I’ll be thinking of you, and hoping you stay safe!

  8. Just a lurker wanting to say, stay safe.

  9. It’s the true nature of a real community that when things get tough, we circle the wagons to help our friends in need. By that definition, this community of blogging parents is as close-knit as any I’ve ever seen.

    I hope you guys stay safe and if there’s anything I can do, please don’t hesitate to ask.

  10. Should have read your entry first… but I was furious when I saw the picture of your daughter and had to email you ASAP. I hope something is done about it, NOW!

    And OMG! Stay safe!!!

  11. We do have an amazing community.

    I have been worrying about you. I know you’re going to need a good night’s rest very soon. Let us know if you need anything.

  12. Ever since you started posting about the fires I’ve been watching the news (something I NEVER DO ) and thinking and praying for your family –

    you do totally rock…
    I’ll be pulling for you

  13. I’m sorry to hear that Violent Acres has struck out at you this time. I hope she responds maturely.

    And I wish you all the best with your safety and family health.

  14. Keeping my fingers crossed that you are all safe. Wonderful links (thanks for the MOMocrats shout out) and good luck with the photo. It’s not like you need to be worrying about that right now.

  15. Just wanted you to know that another mom out in Texas cares.

  16. Yet another Texas-based mom. Hang in there. Holding my breath and sending safe thoughts your way.


  17. I know you’ve been wanting me to offer, and it’s not like me because … let’s face it … EVERYONE wants to visit or live out here.

    So, yes, you are welcome to stay at my house in northern Oklahoma.

    Just don’t tell anyone, or I’ll be flooded for requests every time someone has a hot water heater explode or something.

  18. Please stay safe…my thoughts are with you and yours.

    As far as the picture on VA’s blog, it seems to me that people who are envious strike out at others to get attention. It is too bad that she has to use the tactics of mockery and verbal aggression to bring traffic to her site instead of relying on her rapier wit and sarcasm.

  19. Minnesota has a nice crisp air to it right now and I think my father in law would have a coronary if there were someone else like me in the house. Well someone else like me that’s much much cooler! and ballsier! Is that a word?

    On a side note, I found that a man had put one of my son’s photos as a favorite on Flickr as well as other young boys in bathing suits, underwear and whatnot. Needless to say, that account no longer exists for him. Why do people feel the need to be scum and pull kids into it. Gah!

  20. Awww, you know we are all here for ya. And hey, if you want to take a trip to Alabama, we got some great bloggers here! 😉

  21. Keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers Q.

  22. -hugs-

    I’m keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers. I’m so afraid for you and I feel so helpless because I can’t be there with you to try and make things less scary.

    Please be as safe as you can be.

    I hope the fires end quickly for the sake of all those that are affected by them.

  23. I didn’t realize that the fires were so close to your family. Here’s hoping that they stay away and that your family will be OK. I had horrific childhood asthma, so I really feel for your son. I don’t do prayers, but you are definitely in my thoughts.

  24. I hope that the fires stay away from you. As for the other thing, I hope that Karma kicks ass and soon!!!

  25. Just wanted to let you know that my thoughts are with you. Love.

  26. I hope that you and yours stay safe. We saw the fires in S. Cal. a few years ago, and it was terrifying. Take care.

  27. Hi there!, greetings from Madrid, Spain. It must be hard to get up and see a smoke courtain over your head, in Spain we are used to have fires that size on July and August. Anyways we’ve never dealed with one such as huge in Madrid. Just hope the rains come quickly, bcause it seems a hard one to stop

  28. My aunt was evacuated yesturday. Stay safe!

  29. The fires look horrifying and I cannot imagine…..

    be safe….keep your laptop safe!!

    and fingers crossed that the winds stop soon!

  30. so glad that you are safe. I am sending prayers to everyone in your community.

  31. Wow, I just can’t believe some people, they must have such empty lives…

    …to think that taking some dick and popping out a bloody little crumbsucker 9 months later is some kind of achievement. Ah well, it’s a lot easier than doing something with your life! Maybe the kid will do what you didn’t…or maybe it will just mindlessly swim upstream and spawn like it’s mommy and it’s mommy and it’s mommy

  32. Yet another bold statement shot forth from the land of the anonymous. Too scared and ashamed of themselves to reveal who they really are, but perfectly willing to reveal what empty human beings they are. “Bill” wants us to believe that he’s happy that he is not a parent, but it’s kind of obvious to everyone that the reason he isn’t is because he can’t even get a girl to talk to him, much less want to breed with him. So enjoy the safety of anonymity and comfort of masturbating to internet porn on Friday nights. Just understand that the rest of us are happy you’re not procreating. The only thing you’ll ever leave behind are frightened anon comments and we’re glad that’s all you’ll ever leave. The world is a better place for it. Now wipe off your keyboard, it’s starting to get sticky.

  33. You’re right- the blogging community is super crazy cool.

  34. I have watched several times these fires and the damage caused by them. Hope everything will be fine in the future.

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