Throwback Post: Happy 10th Birthday Thomas


November 14 2015

Thomas chose sushi for dinner and then we made the cake. I must have been so giddy (or so tired) that I put 1 cup too much water in the mix. Only realized it when I put it in the oven. I thought if looked way to runny. Oops!!

Took it out and added coconut flour, almond flour, another egg, more vanilla, more coconut sugar, and some cocoa. I was thinking at least it would cook and be solid even if it didn’t taste good (Lillian was on the verge of a meltdown due to my oops moment). Turned out yummy and meltdown averted! YAY!!

Throwback Post: A Collection of Thomas Birthday Celebrations


November 16 2014:

Full day of getting ready for Thomas’ birthday party, then a small intimate party with his best friend with an absolutely yummilicious chocolate cake with creme cheese frosting, and ending with a quick trip to the park to walk the labyrinth. Great day!!

November 16 2013:

Thomas birthday party adventures at The Romano Casa! Pizza, salad, itty bitty cake with a fun dance party as the finale! Thank you Romano Duo … Team TLC loves y’all!

November 15 2013:

Thomas’ class birthday celebration was yesterday. The kids sit in a circle with the birthday child in the center and take turns asking questions. Thomas was asked which person he liked best and who is his best friend. He answered that his sister was his favorite person and that at home his best friends are his Mom and sister. At the conclusion he got to blow out the candle. Then all the students take time to write at least three complements for the birthday person! So cool! BONUS! I got to meet and hold the tortoises …. Shelly and Charger! So darn cute!

November 12 2013:

Happy 8th Birthday Thomas (11.13.13) … Thomas’ 8th year of life begins tomorrow. There are hardly words to describe what this young man with his wise soul have brought into my life. I am blessed daily by his presence, his love, his wisdom and his humor. I LOVE that I get to be his mentor and his mother and that HE gets to be my mentor and son!

He Swam Into the World on November 13, 2005

November 12 2012:

Beautiful and amazing day for a walk …. I’m thinking a Team TLC Adventure is calling our name …..

Searching for rocks and clues to solve made up mystery adventures … And a near miss for Thomas … He almost ran over a cow!!!

“It’s a great day to be alive” -Thomas Darnell

I so very much agree with you Thomas … Driving home just now my eyes filled with tears of joy for how freakin amazing this day has been and how great it is to be alive …


Birthday Eve celebration adventures for Team Member T … Here’s to his last night as a 6 year old … Bring on the 7th year!!! When you put 7 candles all close together, you get one GIGANTIC flame!!! I knew he’d like that!

Celebrating the 52nd Birthday – Camilla Downs

On February 26, 2022 I turned 52 years old. I seem to be behind in many non-urgent tasks these days. My body decided to get my attention once I hit 50, along with being extremely exhausted. I’ve had my hands full addressing some health issues, along with addressing urgent or deadline intense matters for Thomas and Lillian.

We had a low-key, mild celebration. The Romano Duo and my brother came to our place, with Frank kicking things off by making me a couple of virgin bloody marys. We had lunch together, opened gifts, and then enjoyed a vegan, strawberry rhubarb pie.

We also celebrated a win for Lillian. She has pretty much conquered her fear of cats, so we lit a candle for her to blow out in celebration. There’s something to be said for exposure therapy. It absolutely worked magic when Thomas finally convinced me to allow him to adopt a cat. Chad Basil the First came into our lives in December 2021 for Thomas to care for and have as emotional support. Lillian has slowly warmed up to him, at about the same pace as Basil has taken to open up to us.

It’s been all I can do to keep up with these matters, with my precious walks growing less frequent. I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to resume the frequency soon. For a while now, I’ve not been posting as much on social media as I have in the past. I’ve also not written anything for a couple of years. I’ve been, and am, numb and exhausted. I am in the midst of addressing the health issues, with hopes that this helps to lift my spirits.

I have just completed four weeks of physical therapy for my neck, with four more to go. This being an initial step before having an MRI. I’m seeing a GI doctor to address gut issues. I’ve done a SIBO test, and am awaiting the results. I’ve had a full gut ultrasound which indicated a dilated (enlarged) bile duct. I’m now scheduled for an MRI of my pancreas, gallbladder, and all ducts to determine the cause of the dilated bile duct. I’m also scheduled for a colonoscopy and endoscopy in May. The colonoscopy is just routine as I’ve never had one. But the GI doctor added the endoscopy to see if we can determine the cause of some additional pain and discomfort. Additionally, I’m scheduled with a cardiologist to have an echocardiogram performed.

We continue to have many beautiful and exciting events and wins come into our life, too. I’ve posted about those as they happen. I’ve always been one to keep the unlovely moments of life to myself until I’ve had time to process it and/or I’ve determined the solution. This is the Way (for me). I love The Mandalorian, by the way!

Team TLC is looking forward to attending the Chromosome 18 Family Conference this summer in San Antonio, after it has been held virtually the past two years. Our future is bright, with many lovely moments, trips, and celebrations on the horizon. The time I currently find myself seems to be a grease-the-wheel, fill my cup moment as we prepare for the exciting times that await us.

I share with all of you, as that’s who I am, and who you know me to be. This is my path, to be authentic, vulnerable, and to let others know they are not alone. xoxo

See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

“Words of Alchemy”, published December 2019, is a free-verse poetry memoir covering the last 6 years of my life. The poetry of nature, the poetry of healing, the poetry of appreciation, the poetry of love, in one beautiful book.

Amazing news! My 20 year old daughter, Lillian Darnell’s debut book, “Where Would You Fly and Other Magical Stories” was published January 2018. Learn more and order here

Wonderfully exciting news! My 16 year old son, Thomas Darnell‘s book, Biggest Little Photographer is published. Be inspired! Learn more and order here.