Category Archives: Uncategorized

Evening Tea Chat


Hello friends!

I just wanted to share a short and sweet evening tea chat with you.  This time of year some herbal tea with local honey is just what I need to keep my allergies away.  How are you feeling?

As we get busy with work, caring for our children, our relationships, and our homes, I wanted to encourage you to take time to care for yourself.  Remember that God wants you to be healthy and whole.  Make sure you are taking time for yourself so you can be there for others.  Here are a few healthy mom tips from my heart to yours:

Remember to eat throughout the day. 
Remember your water intake, too.
Sit down and enjoy reading those stories; the laundry will wait.
Hug your babies, they grow so quickly.
Thank God for all of your blessings, every day.
Smell the flowers and see the sunset.
Take a nap.
Walk, dance, play.
Smile and laugh, you are beautiful!
Enjoy your husband and make time for him daily; your children are a combination of your precious love.

Sweet dreams,

Trina Licavoli Gunzel

Live, laugh, love and love some more!

The responsibility of teaching little hands


Dear friends,
How are you ending your week?  Are you frazzled?  Do you feel fulfilled or frustrated?

I know for me, sometimes I look at my degrees and feel like I thought at least a Master’s would have finally given me everything I needed to be an awesome parent every day right?  Then why do these sweet little hands of my daughter’s still hit her brother if she didn’t get her way?  Why do I have to ask my children to still pick up their rooms and remind them to be loving and kind?  I mean come on, all of my training and education is about families and children so mine should be perfect, right?  WRONG!

I am humbled to admit that I thought if I just tried my best and loved everyone that my family would never argue and I would get that fairy tale life we are always shown in movies.  WRONG! 

I was missing the point!  This dreamy family in my head is not the reality that IS perfectly IMPERFECT.

Communicating issues, working together to overcome struggles, listening to each other, joining each other in times of sadness, and lifting each other up IS the point.  When we allow the Holy Spirit to guide our decisions and DO the work to grow, then we see the real rewards.

My kids are not just naturally behaved unless I teach them to be.  I also have to model managing myself so they can see that good example.  That doesn’t mean I’m perfect!  That means I AM teaching them how to solve real issues, problems, and think for themselves.

Intentional moments that are real and messy and often create custom families built on love, respect, values and, faith. 

There is no magic pill or surgery that will give you what you want in life.  Complaining doesn’t get it done, either.  If you want help figuring something out, think of a new way, get more specific training, and get mentors that are real with you and share actual and applicable life experiences. 

The coolest thing is we are NOT alone!  Nobody has a perfect life.  Everyone does have a perfectly imperfect life and through sharing how we overcome struggles and challenges and thinking better, we can get exactly where we want to be in our health, relationships, work, and personal walk.

I am so excited finally to be learning things that put the whole picture together for me and being able to see the effects in my own family.  Guiding little hands is a huge responsibility and I take parenting very seriously.  I know to be the best parent for my kids and wife for my husband, I have to be the best version of myself, FOR ME!

Start there and you’ll be amazed at the transformation reflected in your life.  It’s really about the journey and learning anyway right?  The sooner we stop fighting that and start enjoying learning the lessons from our struggles, the sooner we get to enjoy the whole picture that is, after all, our life.

With love,

Pump site issues and highs

This week we had a pump site issue with our son that resulted in high blood sugars for about four days.

It’s a tricky balance between trying not to waste insulin and supplies, deciding if your child is getting sick or not, and thinking about carbohydrate calculating errors.

When all else fails, switch out the site.  Sometimes, especially after years of injections, scar tissue forms and the insulin is not as effective in those areas.

Other times, tiny bruises or pimples can create areas of infection, which also makes the insulin not get into the body as well.

It can be tricky to find fresh skin to inject the needles, but it it so important to rotate sites.  We try to rotate between our son’s tummy, legs, and hips for his pump sites.  We rotate between his arms for his cgm, since this has resulted in the best combination for accuracy of the devices for us, and the best blood sugar for our son.

We are constantly reminded that maintaining good blood sugar is an hourly and minute by minute management.  Every day is a balancing act and while Type 1 Diabetics look healthy, it is a determined constant effort that results in a healthy outside AND inside. 

After switching out sites, our son is back to feeling great and ranging in the 100’s.  High blood sugars make him feel awful, hyperactive, he is puffy, and mimics being sick, but check equipment for issues before assuming illness.  It’s tricky when high bold sugar indicates illness but could also be the reason your child isn’t feeling well.  I tell you what, Type 1 keeps you on your toes!

Keep up the great work and be encouraged!  You are not alone!

Post your Type 1 Diabetic experiences with us at #cantdiabeatus on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.


Trina Gunzel
Author, Illustrator, Educator, Type1 Mom


Tiny Gifts To Treasure


Children give the sweetest gifts from the heart.

Sometimes it’s a rock, a leaf, or a hug.  Other times it’s a song, a drawing, or a feather.  Whatever way they express their love, always accept their gift. 

They want to give you a gift from their heart and a tiny granite crystal they lovingly found in the driveway may be all they have to give.  It’s truly the thought that counts and we are showing them we value and treasure them when we accept it.

Enjoy the precious sweet memories and creations from your children that only exist from their little minds and hearts in these fleeting windows of time.  Little hands, little gifts, but sweet memories to last a lifetime.

Happy Valentine’s!


The Power Of Play

When was the last time you spent time just playing?

I am the parent of two energetic kids so I know how busy it is getting all of the “have to do” things done every day.  I also know I can complicate things and be so busy designing activities and attending events that I have to remind myself of the easiest and most important thing: spending time just PLAYING with my kids.

Win, win!  For the kids, they learn important social skills, expressive language, creative expression, confidence, and feel valued as we listen to and participate in their custom created worlds as they verbally write and reenact their stories.

Outside sand areas become castles and battlefields.  Sheets and chairs become forts and pots and pans with spoons become bands.  It doesn’t always have to be complicated and it’s ok if we don’t understand all the rules they make up.

Embrace the power of play!  If you don’t think it’s important, just ask your kids what their favorite thing to do with you is.  There’s your win!   It’s spending time with you!  (If it’s not, you might want to see how it can be.) I’d love to hear what their responses are and would just bet somehow a favorite memory involved “play.”

Spreading Light From Coast To Coast


Hi friends!

No matter where you are, I hope you feel connected today.  There are so many beautiful places and people in this world.  Go explore!

Everywhere we have been spreading our message of light and hope through books, we meet people who generously share their hearts and stories with us and I am so grateful.

It’s amazing who you meet if you are just willing to talk to people.  For example, while at a scenic view point in Virginia, we met a man with the exact insulin pump our son Wyatt wears.  He was inspired by our journey, story, and wanted to stay connected with us.

We’ve met families who bought our book:  Can’t The Highs And Lows of Raising a Type 1 Diabetic Child for their friends because they knew they were struggling.  Writing has been a great way to share our story and connect with others.  It’s also something I feel compelled to do.  For many writers, it’s not a choice, but stories simply must come out.

Whatever story is on your heart, I hope you find the courage to share it.  You might be the main character in your life’s journey living your epic adventure.  You might feel trapped in a tragedy or passionately living a love story.  Be persistent and active in your life and wherever your journey takes you, I wish you courage, health, and the wisdom gained from your adventures and experiences.  As long as you’re making progress, you haven’t wasted any time.  Progress is learning, progress is growing, and sometimes progress is just breathing and listening.  Sending love and light from coast to coast.

Be inspired!

Trina Licavoli Gunzel

Be a ray of light

Hi friends.  As I have been traveling with my family on this coast to coast tour, I am focusing on my personal desire for doing this.  I know we all have struggles and challenges to overcome in life.  We can either let them build us up or break us.  Everything we go through can be a positive source of energy and light or dilute our spirits.

As we come across others sharing our journey, we can learn something from everyone.  We may not always see eye to eye, but we can respect our differences and enjoy the time we share together, if for nothing but the opportunity to see another person’s story and have empathy for their experiences.

I challenge you to let go of people who have hurt you, shine in your circumstances, let your light radiate the love of our Savior, Jesus Christ, and be a living example of love, wherever you are.  When we stop allowing things to hurt us and embrace our journey, that’s where true healing begins.  It’s not selfish to focus on your own needs.  When you are whole, your light will naturally shine and reach others.

As I am stepping back from distractions, spending intentional time with my husband and kids, and exploring new ways to reach out and help others, I see that every experience, move, career, challenge, and success has been a part of God growing me and I am grateful.  It hasn’t always been fun, but I am happy to see and laugh at things that were once overwhelming that are now routine.  Off to do a site change!  We’ve got this!  Can’t!  #thrive

What light are you sharing today?

Trina Licavoli Gunzel

Diabetes Pokes

I saw a cactus the other day and couldn’t help but be reminded of every poke my son has had over the last seven years to survive.  If we totaled every finger poke, insulin shot, and site change, he easily has more scar tissue on his body than every needle on a cactus.

As we do this coast to coast book tour to support, encourage, and spread awareness of Type 1 Diabetes, I hope more people will understand, a push for a cure, not just advancements in technology will be made, and Type 1 families will know they are not alone.

We are sharing tips, our experiences, promoting our newest book:  Can’t The Highs and Lows Of Raising a Type 1 Diabetic Child and sharing some great memories with our kids as we road school, create educational curriculum and materials, and boost our Type 1 son’s attitude of this life threatening condition he’s been living with for seven years.  There is no cure, but we want him to know and see that he can do and be anything he wants to in life.  We are Type 1 family strong.  Thanks for spreading the good word and encouraging us!  Can’t!
Trina Gunzel and family

Beautiful YOU!

Hi friends!

Well, here we go, another year is off and running!  How are you doing so far?  Are you sticking to any of the goals you set?  Or, have you decided not to set any but are working toward being the best version of yourself?

I am trying to be the best version of myself.  Mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally.  This year, I am striving to be whole so I can be there for those who need me in every way.  I realize I can’t if I’m not feeling well.  Rest is a crucial part of this.  I encourage you to do the personal reflections I included in my newest book: Can’t and join me in personal achievement goals this year.

Love those who love you, let go of old hurts, thrive, grow, and enjoy your life.  Best wishes,


Type 1 Travel Tips


Busy on our Can’t book tour coast to coast thinking of you.  I am reminded of the concerns and needs we share.  Here are some things that work for us:

Bring our Sentry device in the trailer so we can still monitor blood sugars at night. (Take whatever your system is and back up supplies )

Try to have stable blood sugars and protein before bed to keep from having spikes that keep you up at night.  (Easier said than done when trying new foods)

Keep healthy snacks in the car:  water, almonds, cheese sticks, cut up veggies, apples, etc.

Have low snacks with you:  gummy snacks, juice, fruit roll ups, etc.

Try to get exercise at rest stops, national parks, hiking trails, etc. and watch for low blood sugar results, especially in cold weather.

Traveling is always an extra challenge but the memories are priceless!

Trina Licavoli Gunzel