Category Archives: deacon

brain stuff


this week i’m at a training for gifted and talented students.  yesterday we heard an amazing speaker, lisa van gemert, and she is the smartest person i’ve ever met.  (seriously, she works for mensa) ((i’m only 4% points from joining mensa :))  she is also very funny and has a generous heart.

her training was awesome because she gave us so many awesome resources which i will be sharing soon.

i learned so much from her about our brains.  first, the movie LUCY, besides being horrible, is not scientifically correct.  second, our brains are amazing and we should all learn more about how they work.  third, addictions are a brain issue and should be treated as diseases.  and most importantly for me, how to deal with kids or adults when their cerebral cortex goes offline and only the limbic system is working.

deacon and masamo tend to act of flight/fight many times during the day.  it is easier to deal with a screaming child when i remember that the thinking part of their brain has shut down.  i’m going to try to use deep breaths, counting, and focusing to help their cerebral cortex come back online and then discuss problem solving strategies.  i’ll let you know how that goes :)…

another thing about our brains that was super interesting is to remember that the people i deal with a majority of the time (my kids and school students) have not finished growing the frontal lobe.  the frontal lobe isn’t fully formed until age 25.  the frontal lobe is where we understand and can evaluate consequences. understanding that is changing my life.

here is an article that lisa van gemert wrote about why we need to sleep.  it is awesome.  read it!

click here :)

and what would a blog post be without a picture???


this is from ethiopia when mossy became part of our family.  my sweet babies!

First Pack Meeting


537045_10152268971972178_1241043417_nDeacon had his first pack meeting on Tuesday evening. He was officially “inducted” into the boy scouts. He got to hold a smoking cup of dry ice that symbolized the “magic of scouting” before dumping it into a cooler with other ingredients to create homemade root beer. Now we have to get all these patches sewed on the shirt.


Cub Scouts


Deacon is entering the world of Cub Scouting. We are filling out the paper work, paying our yearly dues, and buying the Tiger Cub short sleeve shirt with patches. Deacon is very interested in scouting, especially the camping and pinewood derby parts. 

This was something I did when I was a kid, although didn’t see it through more than a few years. I think I’ve still got my pinewood derby cars in a box somewhere. Here is photographic evidence (I’m far left):

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First Day of School – Fall 2013


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We are going to try to resurrect the family blog again. If we’re successful you’ll see more pictures, videos, and stories of life with the Faulkners.

We have a Kindergartner and a first grader now. My big adjustment is not having kids in the car with me for the commute to work now. Which also means no HOV lane. It is a trade off – I get to listen to my preferred radio station in the morning – but I’ve got to pay to drive in the fast lane now.

happy birthday deacon


happy birthday deacon! deacon turns 5 today. we celebrated with a big party on sunday and those pics will follow later. to catch you up to speed, here are some birthday pasts.

Birthday #4 at the little gym. theme was batman.

Birthday #3 at home. theme was spiderman, but he wore a batman mask. go figure.

Birthday #2 at home. theme was basketball.

Birthday #1 at home. theme was curious george.

here is a seasonal deacon picture just for fun

and this one was taken on the way home from Ethiopia about 4 years ago. never were truer words written :)

Deacon & Masamo @ the museum


20110828-085213.jpg The blog has been quiet lately, and I wanted to share a pic and say hello. I don’t post very often, as this had turned into “Margo’s world” but the original intent was for this to be a family style blog. I’m afraid that life is moving fast and these days of preschool life will be gone and forgotten. So the pic is a reminder and an update so you can see them in their element. This was taken outside the Houston museum of natural history not long ago, during one of our excursions. We are members there and enjoy the butterflies, dinosaurs, and hands on science experiments. Deacon usually tries to stop this globe from turning, but never does. (interesting metaphor about the time thing)

Video from Trinity Cathedral in Addis Ababa


This is a video I recorded on March 4, 2010 while touring Trinity Cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. We were very fortunate to hear the cantor and chorus rehearsing the deggua or “church song” in the cathedral. The video also shows the beautiful stained glass windows and the tomb of Haile Selassie.

The sacred music of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church is very old. The hymnary is attributed to Saint Yared, a scholar who lived in Aksum in the 6th century. This is perhaps the most astonishing thing about our journey toward adoption because Deacon’s “finding place” was in front of Saint Yared Music School in Addis Ababa in 2006. I don’t think it was a coincidence that my profession/livelihood/calling happens to be church music and that is where Deacon was found! That news was an epiphany for me. Just as God had used music in my life to bring me into the faith and into a relationship with Him as an adopted son, God used a music school to make me a father and teach me about faith, love, and hope.

Learn more about Trinity Cathedral HERE. Learn more about Ethiopian Orthodox Liturgy HERE.

and now he’s 4.


deacon turned 4 yesterday. all i know is i was looking at this face on what seemed like just yesterday…

and then this face today…

how do i slow this aging process down? any tips? because i swear i’ll wake up tomorrow and he’ll be at college.