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  • This Sunday's sauce is one no one can refuse.

    You might be surprised that this hallmark-loving and romance novel enthusiast's favorite movie is The Godfather. I have watched it more times than I can count and have quoted it just as much:" Leave the gun, take the cannoli." Few movies have been as deeply ingrained in pop culture as this one, which paved the way for many of today's most extraordinary talents, such as Diane Keaton and Al Pacino. I recently came across the Clemenza Special Sunday Sauce recipe and had to try it. All I can say is you will never buy sauce from a jar again, and it will leave your family and friends asking for seconds. Although Clemenza doesn't give exact measurements, we can interpret them by watching this classic film. Before Clemenza teaches Michael the secret recipe, we see him add a 28 oz can of tomato sauce and 28 oz diced tomatoes to a large pot. Then, of course, he says, "You add a little bit of oil, fry the garlic, then throw in some tomatoes and tomato paste you shove in all your sausage and your meatballs heh and a little bit of wine a o' a little bit a sugar and that's my trick." So, based on this scene, below are the ingredients for making Clemenza's Special Sunday Sauce The Godfather's Special Sunday Sauce Your Ingredients 2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil 2 to 4 cloves of garlic, minced One 28-ounce can of diced tomatoes One 28-ounce can of can of tomato sauce One 6-ounce can of tomato paste 12 ounces chocolate chips or chunks 1 pound of Italian sausage cooked 1 pound of homemade meatballs cooked 1/4 cup sugar a splash of red wine Directions In a large pot, heat a pan over medium to low heat. Once hot, add minced garlic. Fry the garlic until golden brown; be sure to avoid burning. Garlic will fry in about 30 seconds, so watch it. Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste to the pot. Stir and combine with the garlic and oil. Bring the sauce to a boil and add whole or cut Italian sausage and homemade meatballs. I bought mine fresh from the HyVee meat counter, which was terrific. I also used frozen meatballs, but feel free to make your own. Add a splash of red wine like a Cabernet or Pinot Noir, and Fish off the sauce with 1/4 cup sugar. In terms of cooking time, Sunday Sauce takes several hours, up to eight hours in total. Although served quickly in The Godfather, it should simmer for at least a few hours before adding the meat to the sauce. I did it for about 3 hours. Serve it with a classic Caesar salad, and, of course, don't forget the Canolli for dessert.; it will be a family favorite for years to come. For recipes like this, click subscribe to have more recipes like this sent to your email.

  • Prepare For the Carriage Ride Of Your Life.

    Happy Valentine's Day, Butterflies. If you are a Bridgerton fan like myself, today you were in for a special treat as we got a sneak peek of Season 3 of Bridgerton with several members of the cast, including our Season 3 leads Luke Newton and Nicola Coughlan. We have a new clip that I won't give spoilers to but will be posted on my Instagram @thebuttferly_chronicles later today, so if you have yet to follow, head over and give me a follow. Today, we also got a lot of fun content and stunning new pictures from Netflix. The fan event was just what diehard fans of the Book and show needed. Can you believe it has been almost two years since we were told we were getting Polin Season for Season 3? Now, I love all the Bridgerton Books from the series, but my favorite has to be Romancing Mr. Bridgerton, which is what this upcoming season is based on. If you haven't read it, you have until May, so I recommend it. You will love it, and it will tie you over until we get a full trailer in March or April. The one detail aside from the new clip was dropping the episode titles. As we know, there is always an episode that is a nod to the Book, like episode six is entitled Romancing Mr Bridgerton. Each Epidosde title is an easter egg for what we can expect for the episode. I thought it would be fun to write what I think will happen in each episode based on the titles. 3:01Out of the Shadows Colin will return from his travels early, missing Pen and disheartened that she never responded to a single letter. He will be greeted by his family, who are preparing for Fran's debut. We will see The Featheringtons announce Prudence's engagement to Harry Danworth. Looking at the photos, which I will also share later, it looks like the Queen may welcome the Ton back for the season after the presentation. That is when Pen sees that Colin is back and is upset. She was not expecting to see him as she thought he would be away for the season. I believe Lady Danbury will notice this and will offer to help Pen. After all, they strike up a strong friendship in the book. After considering her offer, she will look at the dresses in her wardrobe and decide it's time for her to have a mild makeover. We will see Anthony learning to lean on his brothers more and more, as Benedict was likely taking over more duties while Kate and Anthony were on their Honeymoon. We will have the Danbury Ball and Pen. She will be frustrated by how, even with the new wardrobe, she still has difficulty securing a gentleman's attention and will try to slip out of the ball early, but Colin will follow her, and we will have the moment she confronts him. We will end with Colin likely offering her his help in securing a match. 3:02 How Bright the Moon We know that the moon, like lighthouses, was vital in helping sailors "Colin" navigate harsh seas, aiding in guiding them home. Could Colin realize during these lessons that Pen is his home, why he came home early, and why he is determined to win her friendship back? We will have two key moments from the Book: the first kiss and the hand injury. Today, Nicola and Luke were interviewed, saying things happen quickly. Will we have Violet's birthday party? 3:03 Forces of Nature We will see Lord Debling enter into the picture as a serious suitor and shake Colin to his core. I also think we will have Eloise navigating the marriage mart but on her terms and will come to understand Pen's point of view more. Meaning she realized how hard it was for her. We could see the start of an understanding between them, but they are not fully back as friends yet. Judging by the Photos, we will also have the Symthe Smith musicale. 3:04 Old Friends I think this is the episode when Pen and El fully reconcile. It also could mean someone from Lady Danbury's past will return, leaving her unsure how to move forward. I think we will see Colin and Eloise have a heart-to-heart about his feelings for Pen. I also believe we will have the confrontation of Colin's discovery of Pen being Lady Whistledown and his demanding She enters the carriage." I think it is more of a love declaration in the Carriage scene. Luke, when asked what word to describe the carriage scene, said intimatel. 3:05 Tik Tok I am one for symbolism, and the Clock symbolizes the passage of life. I think we will see Colin Proposing and his brothers being very unhelpful. Then, the proposal is announced to each family. Pen is learning to understand she will have more eyes than ever now that Colin and her are engaged and the trials of learning to adjust to that. I think we will have the Engagement Ball and the important mirror scene. 3:06 Romancing Mr Bridgerton We will have the bachelor party and a bridal shower. I think we will see them each get advice on Marriage relations. We will have a wedding, which could even be a double one. 3:07 Joining Hands we will see Colin and Pen settle in Bloomsbury blissfully happy and El adjusting to this new dynamic. I think we will see a threat on Lady Whistledown. 3:08 into the Light I think we will have the mask ball, and Ben will meet Sophie, and he will take over as lead for season 4. It could also mean that Pen is unmasked as Lady Whistledown to the Ton or maybe just to the Bridgerton family. I would love Colin and Pen to write the column together; it would be a true partnership next season since both are great writers. These are some of my thoughts, but I would love to hear yours. What are you most looking forward to in season 3, and what do you think these titles could mean?

  • New Year, New Look For the Butterfly Chronicles

    Welcome to the New Butterfly Chronicles Almost three years ago, I started a journey into the world of blogging. It was the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and I was looking for a creative outlet and a way to stay connected to people when the world was so isolated. While visiting with others on social media, I came up with an idea to start a blog to help others who feel less alone and support those dealing with the same rare medical disorder I called Turner Syndrome. I wanted to inspire others and help raise awareness for this life-altering disorder. I feel I have, in a small way, accomplished that goal by being featured on national media and authoring an award-winning book called The Butterfly Chronicles: a Journey of Finding God's Purpose Living with a Rare Genetic Disorder. While my mission for awareness and expanded research will always be my first passion and primary mission, I felt it was time to expand the Butterfly Chronicles into a brand and site everyone can enjoy. That is why I am excited to announce that the Butterfly Chronicles will now be a complete lifestyle blog. Yes, The Butterfly Chronicles. While the chronicles will still support the special needs community, it will now feature so much more. _ Entertainment _ Food product reviews and recipes _ Book Club and Book Reviews _ Motivation _ Interviews with people making an impact - Restaurant Reviews on local and regional area restaurants. -self-care tips and more - To expand into travel reviews I hope you join me in this next big chapter as I share with you all what I love, and I also would love for you to share yours with me on this journey. I want this to be a place for us to engage with one another and support each other. So, if you have a recipe you want me to try to make, a book you recommend, or a show you love and think I would enjoy, be sure to reach out. This blog was designed with my butterflies in mind, so let's sore to new heights together. Be sure to follow me on Social media and subscribe today so you never miss out.

  • Season Three of Bridgerton: What We Know So Far

    Dearest Gentle Readers, This morning, the Ton was buzzing with the latest news from Lady. Whitsledown herself that after much anticipation, patience, and excitement, the Ton will return for the third social this coming Spring, and it seems love will be in the air for the third Featherington daughter and the third Bridgeton son. I, for one, can not wait as I love to spill the tea as much as any gentle bread lady, so let's prepare our favorite dessert and tea to dish on the latest gossip. What do we know so far about the upcoming Bridgerton Season 3? We left last season with Pen (Nicola Coughlin ) heartbroken by her best friend Eloise, her discovery of Pen being Lady Whistledown and Colin's harsh words that he would never court her, not even in her wildest dreams. Now, we will return to the Ton with Pen having a whole new outlook and determined to find a match. That will allow her the independence she needs to continue writing and get out of the confines of her mother's home. She returns to town with a new wardrobe. However, things don't start as well as she likes, and the return of a certain Bridgerton does not seem to help matters. Meanwhile, Colin (Luke Newton ) returns from a tour of Italy, France, and Spain with a renewed sexy swagger and is determined to mend his "friendship" with the girl across the square. He is so determined to win "his Pen" back that he plots a foolproof plan to help her become more confident as she fully commits to the marriage. However, when his plans work too well, he must decide what his feelings are for "his Pen." Add in the complications of Pen's rift with Eloise (Claudia Jessie ), Lady Whistledown, and a host of new members to the town, and it will for sure be the most exciting season yet. So have your dance cards ready and prepare for the carriage ride we have all been waiting for. When will it be hitting Netflix? Bridgerton Season Three will stream in two parts with four episodes each. Part 1 May 16th, 2024 Part Two June 13th, 2024 I know it may seem like a long time to wait, and I can not wait to see Nicola and Luke shine on screen and receive all the praise they are almost certain to receive and how they will truly bring Quinn's Romancing Mr. Bridgeton to life. If you haven't read the Bridgerton Series, I highly recommend you grab an eclair and dig in while we wait. You will love them. As we await the return of London's elite, subscribe to my blog so you do not miss out on gossip.

  • The Butterfly Chronicles Stands with Israel

    Over the past few weeks, like most of you, 'I have been trying to process the horrific events happening in Israel. I have been full of emotions, in all honestly, varying degrees of anger and sadness. It has also left me asking why there is so much evil and such an escalation of antisemitism worldwide at levels we have not seen since WW2. The stories and images coming out of Israel are unimaginable. Whether you are Jewish, Muslim, Atheist, Agonistic, or Christian like me, we can all agree that there is no place to accept or allow this type of evil in the world. I may be one person, but I know I am one of many, so I could not stay silent. The Jewish people are some of the most unique, brave, welcoming, and kind people I have ever met. For an assignment for my college education course 14 years ago was to have a multicultural experience. Our Professor wanted to expose us to different cultures in our community. I was excited to visit a Synagogue for a weekly service. It was one of the best experiences I have ever had. The Hebrew language is beautiful, and they welcomed me with open arms and even invited me to dinner afterward, and I happily accepted. The few hours I spent with this small group of lively and unique people opened my eyes and deepened my understanding of how, despite the overwhelming adversity the Jewish people have had to face for thousands of years, they are still full of hope and joy and live their lives to help those around them. Now, the Jewish community needs our support and understanding more than ever. They need our prayers, and if you can support them financially, they need medical aid, food, and daily supplies. I watched a news report last night on 60 Minutes that the situation is so dire there that Doctors have used cell phone flashlights and vinegar to treat the thousands of wounded as they have run out of medical supplies. This was just one of the horrific stories reported out of Israel. Many more will be heard over the weeks, months, and likely years ahead. When the United States was unjustifiably attacked on September 11, 2001, the world united behind us and joined in our fight against the evils of terrorism. Israel was one of our biggest supporters. Now, the United States must stand behind the people of Israel as they fight for survival. Please give what you can, and if not, pray for peace (shalom), pray for hope (Tikvah), healing (Rapha), and strength (kaokh). Let them know that they are not alone.

  • A Mother's Love a Tribute to My Beloved Mom

    There was a plack above our kitchen sink growing up listing all the jobs a mother has. For example, it says a mother is a teacher, doctor, lawyer, chef, and seamstress. That would describe my mom perfectly; She taught me the meaning of unconditional love and the value of hard work. She was there to wipe my tears when I fell off my bike or when I came home after a boy broke my heart. She was like a doctor helping me as I navigated the hard days of my disorder, always knowing exactly what I needed. She was always ready with a needle and thread to hem my jeans because they did not make them short enough for me, and of course, she was there to pass down The Vanderwilt family recipes that have now been passed down to my niece and nephew. she was all those things but also much more. As we mark the second Mother's Day since her sudden passing, I wanted to honor her and tell you more about the most important woman in my life. When I reflect on my beloved mom, one thing that stands out and puts a smile on my face is thinking of her quick wit. If you were lucky to know my amazing mom, this is often the one thing that stands out the most. My mom could crack a great oneliner without showing an ounce of delight in her expression that we all know she had. She was one of the funniest people on the planet. She had gentle ease with everyone making everyone feel they could tell her anything, and often my friends would confide their relationship issues with her as she would never pass judgment on them, which is likely why she was often referred to as the cool mom by my friends growing up. She would belt out the classics like the Monkeys and Oliva Newton John but knew every word to the latest Backstreet Boys Song. She was never afraid to be goofy and showed me how to be ok in my skin and that life was too short to worry about others' opinions. She had this way of making the bad days go away just by turning up the radio and dancing in the kitchen. She also had this quiet strength that I admire so much. She had endured so much in her 64 years of life but never complained, and when the average person would say why me, she would battle on and often with a smile. She showed me the importance of leaning on your faith. This has gotten me through those hard days in the almost two years since her passing. She was also a fantastic cook who knew what authentic comfort food was and would always seem to know when I needed it. She worked full-time but often had fresh Blueberry muffins ready for my brother and me when we woke up for school. She then would come home and make the most fantastic meal after working the whole day at Younkers. Some of my best memories growing up are the times we spent in that kitchen. My dad even built a stool for me so I could reach the kitchen counter to"help" my mom whenever she was baking. She also had the biggest heart; her family was everything, and she always prioritized her family. She would do anything for us and never thought about herself. She was the kindest soul that I miss every day. My mom was my best friend, and though I write this tribute with some tears missing her on this particular day, I am also lucky that God blessed me with this robust role model who taught me the importance of faith, family, and fun. I am blessed that my relationship with my mother was so strong that I have these memories to comfort me. I know there is so much. I wish she could be here for me. To see me someday get married and start my own family to have been by my side as some of my lifelong dreams come true. To see the amazing young woman my niece has turned into and the amazing man my nephew is and to see him marry his soulmate next year. Yes, I could dwell on the unfairness of not having my mom by my side today and every day, but I will not do that. Instead, I will focus on what my mom was there for and the memories I will forever treasure. If you are blessed to be able to celebrate with your mom, be sure to let them know just how much they mean to you. My brother and I ensured we did that, as every phone call and text conversation ended with I love you. To all the fantastic moms or those dads taking on both roles, have a wonderful day full of knowing just how amazing you are.

  • Learning to Love Yourself

    Two weeks ago, I was surrounded by 800 fellow Christian women in my community while attending the Choose Love retreat hosted by Choose Ministries. We focused on loving ourselves, others, and our Lord and Savior. It was indeed a unique and empowering experience that I was blessed to be part of, and I thought I would take the month of May to share some insights into what I learned and how we can all take away some tools for self-reflection and improvement. For this week's blog, I am going to address loving yourself. I know what you are thinking, and believe me, I get it. Loving yourself is undoubtedly a loaded concept, and it is much easier said than done. If I am being sincere, it is far too easy for me to look in front of a mirror and start to point out all my flaws; believe me, it is a long list. I start thinking about how I am too short or heavy, don't like my haircut, am too pale, etc. I do this all the time, and don't even get me started on trying on swimsuits. Now I know I am not alone as a woman; we are very prone to do this and often let what others say impact our appearance. It is so easy to do when you read a hateful comment from someone on social media when a "well-meaning" friend asks if you are sure you do not rather have a salad. I have a friend who is a Christian influencer and posts makeup and funny videos on social media, and I have always enjoyed them; however, the other day, she shared that a man made a hateful comment simply about her physical appearance. How do we not take those types of comments to heart when often the very part of your appearance you are so self-conscious about is what they are commenting on? How do we let it roll off us as though it never stung, to begin with? How do we learn to love ourselves despite our flaws? Now for me, this will always be a work in progress. Living with a rare medical condition that impacts my physical appearance, I know that part of me will always feel self-conscious. I know I will never be a supermodel, thin or tall. I am never going to be the prettiest woman in the room. Indeed, I will never be on Chris Evans's arm. I mean, a girl can dream, though, right? Although I am far from perfect and will always have those insecurities sneaking up on me, I am uniquely made and was chosen by God for a reason. When I feel those Insecurities start to surface or read a negative comment on social media, I focus on this and know that while I will never be perfect, I am perfect in Jesus' eyes, and it brings me peace and serenity to move on with my day. So ladies, the next time you feel self-conscious and those moments of negativity start to creep up, remember that you are a child of God and will always be perfect in his eyes. Also, when you read those negative comments on social media, say a prayer for them because it says more about them and their view of themselves than it says about you. If that doesn't work you can always take a play out of my southern family and friends' playbook and say bless your heart.

  • My Full Weekend and What Lies Ahead for the Butterfly Chronicles.

    With my schedule being jammed back with events lately, I haven’t had much time to hop on my blog and connect as much as I would like over the past several months still learning how to juggle it all and adapting to the new adventures life has thrown my way over the past year. So I wanted to focus this week’s blog on giving an update on what I have been up to and the direction I would like to take the Butterfly Chronicles in the future. In September 2020, I started this blog as a way to be both a resource and a place for support for those with Turner Syndrome and Special Needs. I had never envisioned that it would ever lead to an award-winning book and the attention of the National Press. I am a small-town Iowa girl who was a self-proclaimed political nerd whose goal was to always make a least a small positive impact on her Community, State, and Nation and help those who truly needed it. In January 2020, after serving eight years as a councilwoman for my community and seeing positive change happen, it was time to switch focus, to be honest I wasn’t sure what the focus would be at the time; I just knew that I wanted it to challenge me, to inspire others, and move me outside my confront zone as much as serving elective office had. Then in March 2020, the world was turned upside down when Covid changed our world forever, and many of us were in lockdown and started working from home. When it was not possible to visit friends and family or to go out like we usually did it was time to seek other sources of entertainment and as much as I loved and frankly still love to binge Bridgeton on Netflix it was time to be more productive with my time. When reading messages on TS support groups and hearing from the TS community that they wanted more personal experiences related to what it was like to live with this life-altering disorder, I decided to share my personal journey with you all in a weekly blog. Doing this has changed my life in ways I never thought possible. Sharing my story was not easy for me at first as I am primarily a private person when it comes to my personal life or at least I was before this journey. Since I started this journey, I have opened up and shared personal health struggles and experiences with the world, and in all honesty, it changed my life forever I am so grateful to have the support of all of you along the way as I continue to share a little bit of my world with you. Now you may be asking what is next for you and the Butterfly Chronicles. I am thrilled to announce that I am currently writing the first draft of my second book titled One Generation Away A Millennials Guide to Public Service. I also made my first of a few National Media appearances while of course still continuing to travel for book signings and speaking engagements. Also, as the 2024 Presidential race heats up, I will be actively involved in Iowa caucuses over the next year as well. Most importantly, I am continuing this blog and will be expanding into the world of podcasting by the end of the year. My podcast will share insights from the medical community and personal stories that will leave you inspired and a little less alone in the world of navigating rare disorders like TS. My goal when I founded the Butterfly Chronicles was always to do just that and as it has grown bigger than I imagined it to be, my mission has always stayed the same. I can wait to continue to share updates along the way with you. Now that I have given you all an update on the Butterfly Chronicles, I wanted to share with you the fantastic and rewarding weekend I had. Friday night, I was thrilled to join my church family as a volunteer for One Enchanted Evening. For those that are not familiar Tim Tebow Foundation every year hosts a program called Night to Shine, partnering with churches and organizations around the world to give those living with special needs a night to remember, much like a prom. My church sponsors this every year, and it is so much fun to bring a special evening to those with special needs in our community. We have food, Karaoke, a place to get your nails and face painting done, and great music, and everyone dresses up in formal wear it is just a great evening over 100 people took part I certainly can not wait to volunteer again next year. I also want to take the time to thank all those who supported and stopped by my booths at this weekend’s book signings. I have done many of these over the last year, and it is always so rewarding to visit with you all and hear from you and share stories. On Saturday night, I took a road trip to my state Capital Des Moines and attended the annual Iowa Faith and Freedom event and visited with so many amazing people and caught up with many friends. I got to meet Former Vice President Mike Pence and other dignitaries in attendance. It was an honor to be a part of it, and I think The Faith and Freedom organization for inviting me to be a part of their event I appreciate the support of my amazing home state of Iowa and am forever proud to call Iowa home. I also spent a fun-filled Sunday at the Choose Us Christian Women’s conference in Sioux City selling and signing books and got to attend a fantastic afternoon alongside friends and family listening to amazing music, shopping, and worship. It was a perfect way to recharge after being so busy juggling book signings, full-time employment, writing my second book, and doing national press it was nice to spend an afternoon focusing on what is truly important, and that is leaning on my faith. My faith has kept me grounded when I often feel life has been so crazy, and in all honesty, this past year since the launch of my first book has been a journey, and I could not have done it without you all. If you didn’t get a chance to stop by and get your copy of the Butterfly Chronicles, don’t worry it is still available online wherever books are also sold available on my website www.thebutterflychronicles.net.

  • The Good Doctor Takes on Turner's and My First National Interview

    Monday night and throughout the past week, many of you texted and sent Facebook and Instagram messages asking if I had watched The Good Doctor's latest episode, Half Measures,featuring baby Eden an infant with Turner Syndrome. Most unfamiliariar with TS asked me if this was a good portrayal of the disorder. So I thought I would give my opinion on what I thought of this episode. if you haven't seen it warning spoiler's ahead. In this episode, Dr. Reznick played by the very talented Fiona Guelmann comes across an infant girl named Eden who is in heart failure. When examing her, they determine she has Turner Syndrome. Sadly the infant's mother is very ill and unable to sign off on a course of treatment for baby Eden. While debating how to save her life, they determine surgery rather than treat her with medications, worried that her homeless mother could no take care of her. In a heartbreaking moment in the show, the mother passes away, leaving an uncertain future for baby Eden. The story is set to continue and I am thrilled to see that it will In the past when shows such as Law and Order touched on TS it is often not portrayed in a positive or accurate light. The Good Doctor did a fantastic job scratching the surface of this complex disorder and did so with careful thought to the TS community and I am so proud of how it turned out I am also excited to see the continuation of baby Eden's story on this fantastic show The more awareness we can bring to TS the better we are for it, and the more research and access to medical care can be achieved. That is the main reason I have been an advocate for TS for so many years is I have a goal of bringing more understanding and acceptance for those living with this on a daily basis I often say I don't want the first question asked when I tell people that I have Turner Syndrome to be what is it and sadly that is often the case .So when I had the opportunity to share my story on a national scale. I was honored to join Fox News contributors Rachel and Sean Duffy's Podcast from the Kitchen Table this past week https://radio.foxnews.com/2023/04/12/woke-academics-threatening-the-future-of-america/ In this interview I share my journey with living with this disorder and how it impacted my life and my hopes for awareness and deeper understanding of those living with this complex disorder This was my first National interview, and to be honest, it was scary being so vulnerable on a national platform as big as Fox News. Still, as I did this, I realized that being vulnerable, as scary as it was for me, is also helping those living with this like me feel less alone and find hope that despite the struggles you can still reach your dreams no matter how far at times they may seem. I want to thank Fox News for providing a platform to share my story and also the Good Doctor for bringing attention to Turner Syndrome and hope you will join me in following Eden's story tomorrow night on ABC.

  • Welcome Back To the Butterfly Chronicles

    Hi all, Welcome back to the Butterfly Chronicles. I know it has been a while since I posted, and some of you are wondering what I have been up to. Well, as most of you know, besides raising awareness for those with Special needs, I am also passionate about politics. Over the past several months, I have been busy helping my friends up and down the ticket and celebrating their accomplishments as they start their next chapter in public service. Now that the midterms are over, I thought since it has been a while, I would take a moment to tell you about myself and the mission behind the Butterfly Chronicles. My name is Nicole Cleveland, and I am your average Midwest (Iowan) girl. I love my Iowa Hawkeyes and Chicago Sports teams. Yes, I am a Bears fan and proud of it. I grew up in a small town in northwest Iowa, and If you're asking, the winters are less desirable, but I would not live any place else. Come to Iowa, and you will soon discover that we are that nice, I promise. I learned this growing up while living with a rare genetic disorder known as Turner Syndrome. I was born with this disorder, and my parents were told that my quality of life would be limited at best and that I could never walk normally. They were given the worst and prayed for the best. Soon I surprised the medical experts and was walking normally and would never sit still. I still faced many hurdles and trips to the university of Iowa Children's Hospital and the ER growing up. I was in and out of the ER so much that I knew most of the nurses and Doctors by their first names. Living with TS is difficult with daily medications and shots, and, not to mention, the frustration of being below the average height, can often feel like you are treading water. This is what led me to start the Butterfly Chronicles in 2020. After serving eight years in elective office, I decided I wanted to focus on my other passion of being an advocate for special needs. I wanted to create a place to give others living with TS, and special needs hope, encouragement, and resources to help navigate our daily lives. I wanted to share my story and others in hopes that you will understand that you are not alone and that others like you are going through the same thing. I hope that you will join me as I share my story and highlight others, and in time I hope you will feel encouraged enough to share your journey with me. Let's spread our wings and sore together. As Betty White said, "Butterflies are like women . we may look pretty and delicate, but baby, we can fly through a hurricane " never underestimate your strength and courage, and this site is here to encourage you to do just that

  • Meet Maria Our Butterfly Of The Month

    Visit with Maria Do Carmo Falchi, and you will feel inspired and determined to face anything. Although She was diagnosed at five years old with Turner Syndrome, she has not let her stop from reaching for the Stars, for example, doing her PH.D.Thesis on Tuner Syndrome to change the conceptions of how we understand and perceive Turner Syndrome. She pointed out social media is creating a place for us to be able to share our stories and feel less alone. As she stated, communication is everything, and I couldn't;t agree more. Although she stated that there are some negatives of living with Turner Syndrome, like being short, she wants others to understand that Turner Syndrome is not a death sentence. Maria states "that those with Tuner Syndrome can achieve whatever they want." You are right, Maria, and you are a shining example of that. Maria is a passionate advocate, and I can not wait to see what she will accomplish next. So Let's meet Maria Maira is From Brazil Like many of us, her favorite place to visit is the Beach. She loves the smell of the Sea. Her Favorite Food is barbecue. Being from Brazil, it's a part of her culture. Excuse me booking my plane ticket now. Her Favorite Color is Pink Reading is also something She loves, and Jane Austin Emma is one of her favorite books. Congratulations again, Maria, on being our August Butterfly of the Month. If you would like to be considered for our Butterfly of the Month, visit theButterflychronicles.net and click on the Butterfly of the Month to learn more..

  • Learning to let Others In

    Living with a rare disorder such as Turner Syndrome can sometimes be lonely. We often feel misunderstood, and trying to tell others about our diagnosis is more complicated than people often think. On top of that, we often suffer from social anxiety, making it even more difficult. Given these issues, how do we let others in? How do we share our journey and make more people aware of Turner Syndrome? How do we balance telling others, and the fear of them changes how they see us. Being open to others has been one of the most complex parts of living with Turner syndrome. For so long, I kept my disorder primarily to myself. Not that I was ashamed or embarrassed by my condition. I certainly was not. I always felt that there was a reason God chose me to be the 1 %, and I owed it to him to live my life with purpose and to the fullest. I didn't tell my friends as I suddenly didn't want them to look at me differently and change their orbit around me because I was living with Turner Syndrome. It wasn't until my Sophomore year of high school that I was asked by one of my teachers if I would share with the class about living with Turner Syndrome. My first response was no. I told her I would think about it and returned the next day. After a long talk about how it could help others understand Turner Syndrome, I said yes and began working on my assignment. It was finally my turn to share my diagnosis with the class. I was terrified as many of my good friends were in this class with me; even the boy I had a major crush on was in this class; needless to say, this was a challenge. It went better than I ever thought it would, and my friends were so supportive. The boy I had a crush on never asked me out, but we are still great friends. I don't think he ever knew I liked him. Anyway, the point is by telling the story; I begin a journey of letting others know about Turner Syndrome and raising awareness. Yes, that first moment was uncomfortable for me, but it led me down a path of being an advocate for those with Special Needs. I help almost 25 others understand Turner Syndrome by overcoming that awkward moment. I learned that by sharing my experiences, I could help others to show more empathy to those battling health and learning disabilities. I knew that sharing those uncomfortable moments, although scary, was allowing me to open up and build more substantial and impactful relationships with others. I have realized that God's purpose and maybe the reason he has chosen me to be the 1 % percent to survive was for me to be an advocate for his most precious children. I know it is hard to let others in, even to express ourselves, but when we do, we will find our true selves, and that is when we truly spread out wings and fly.

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