Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wordless Wednesday...YUM

How do you get voted the favorite parent?


Take Allie out to Friendly's while Mom is at work and Boo is at school. In the words of a friend: Well Played, David. Well, Played.


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I miss my kid

We have a great friend Tante (as Allie calls her). She is my old landlady, the one you always hope to have when you are young and in your twenties. She made me homemade cookies and minestrone soup. She taught me how to use a wood stove and how to be a young woman without the benefit of leaning on a man to do things for me. She laid the foundation, that took me years to build on, that liking myself was more important than hoping some one else would.

That and a few more reasons is why we adopted her into our clan. Tante is retired, has no children and her family is back in Canada. Over the past few summers she has taken Allie for the day. They have had great adventures, once renting a Jeep on the Vineyard for the day. (Allie's only complaint was Tante's friends forgot to talk to her in English).

This year, Allie had her first overnight. And then another and another. Last weekend we had a wedding just down the street from Tante's home. She offered to babysit the girls for us and we jumped at the chance to go to an adult wedding and be adults.

When we went to pick the girls up that night Allie informed us she was staying. Apparently she had snuck her toothbrush, comb, clothes and all important Mimi (favored stuffed animal) into her backpack of "stuff" she just had to bring with her. We made plans to pick her up two days later.

Only to be told she would be home in September. And here is why:

They have been to the beach. The movies. Mini-golf. The beach. Pottery, yoga and pilates classes. The beach. They have ridden in bumper boats, explored museums and talked as long as Allie's eyes have remained open. They have done their nails and read books together. Ice cream and dinners out. The beach. They have had sleep overs in every bed in the house.

Including the one in my old apartment.

When she calls at night she is so full of joy and so excited to fill me in.

Tante is giving Allie all the time and adventures we cannot. Not just because of Boo. Partly, if I am honest. There are a lot of activities we pass by knowing Boo will have a panic attack, especially the beach. But even if we take Boo out of the equation I do not know if I would take a week off of work to have a stay-cation. My vacation time is already planned for family time and Boo's appointments.

When I was a little older than Allie, I had a favored Aunt that did for me what Tante is doing for Allie. I think every child should have that person in their life.

We are incredible thankful to Tante for loving Allie the way she does. For taking a week out of her summer to spoil a little girl who is just as happy sitting at the beach as she is playing mini-golf.

But I miss my girl. A week and a half is long enough. So she is coming home tomorrow.

I am sure by 7pm my ears will be bleeding as she tells me about her week.

And I will listen with a smile on my face, knowing I can send her back anytime!
 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Teachers

It is Monday, and time to hear the Word of Allie.




Allie has been lucky to have wonderful teachers most of her life. She was a little nervous about her upcoming 4th grade teacher. She didn't not get her first choice. But was very thankful that she received her second choice.

I asked her why she didn't want Teacher X. I mean, really, how much could she know about the upcoming teachers?


Allie: Well, you see she doesn't like kids. I cannot figure out why anyone would want to be a teacher if they didn't like kids. Didn't she know she would have to work with us?

This has been the Word According to Allie.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The week in Thanks

It's time to join Joy, Kristi and Lizzie to reflect on the week that was, well great when you think about it.

10. Allie has been away all week with a friend, so I got to experience being able to just focus on Boo.

9. Boo's school had a car wash for Zach this weekend. About 20 6-8th graders were there washing cars to raise money for this little boy. Zach is now half-way to his goal.

8. No one complained about the state of their car after the kids "washed" it.
That's Boo "helping" her friends


7. I won two blogging awards / recognition from two great fellow bloggers. I promise to respond soon!

6. With David working a lot of overtime and Allie at our friends house, the house has stayed clean this week. Leaving very little laundry or housework to do this weekend.

5. Boo has moved from her Austin and Allie obsession to Phineas & Ferb

4. I discovered Bacardi's pre-mixed Mojito's. YUM

3.  Boo slept until 9am this morning.

2. I was asked to do my first guest blog

1. That as much as I miss Allie this week, I know she is having the time of her life. So I am thankful twice to our friend!

What are you thankful for this week?




Ten Things of Thankful

Thursday, July 25, 2013

I close my eyes...

Why do we close our eyes when we wish? (another question for the Almighty or Google or hey Lizzie)

The problem with wishes, really is that we always want more. We are never satisfied with the one wish. Ask Allie to use three wishes and first wish is for a thousand more. Kind of like life. I am never satisfied with what I have. Instead I always want more.

I have a great job. But I wanted a college degree to feel complete. Why? I still have the same job I had before the degree. Sure, with more responsibility but really I would have gotten the extra work without the degree. More importantly, without the debt!

We had a nice house. But we wanted more, so we bought land and built our dream house. Once the house was built, that should be it. Right? But just 10 years later we think of all the things we should have done or would have changes.

We have cars that drive us to where we need to be. But we are always on the look out for the next car, who will replace theirs first? (um, me please since mine is the oldest!) Instead of just having a car that can take us from point A to point B we need one with a GPS (because we are too good to read a map), a stereo, DVD player and let's not forget the heated seats so our precious rear ends don't get a chill. A point of honesty, my car has none of those things--other than the stereo but guess what? My next car probably will!

We just upgraded our phones to the IPHONE. Why? Our old phones still worked we could talk and text. But we wanted more than that. Okay, I did. David could care less about staying connected. He uses his IPHONE for the weather and fire stuff. Me? I play words with friends.

I have two great girls, but I always want more for them. I want to be a better mom, the one they deserve. Oh, and  I want Boo not have to have so much therapy and to no throw her shoes out the car window.
Yes, she did it AGAIN!!! Yesterday she managed to throw the shoe out the front passenger window from the back seat.  David actually went back and found it.
I have a good marriage, but I want it to be great. I don't want to have to work so hard at being a wife. I look at other marriages that seem so in sync that seem so effortless. Probably not from their point of view. But I want that easy relationship we had before children and mortgages and car payments.

I live in a great Country. But I want more for it. I want us to live up to the Constitution and what the vision of the Founding Fathers had in mind. That we are all equal and deserve to keep for what we work. That those who defend our country deserve more respect and attention than those who are on television.

As you see, I have a lot of wishes. But if I could only have one wish I would close my eyes and wish to be content with where I am in life.
 


 
  What would you wish for and no you cannot say more wishes!

 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday...Patience

It took almost two years of therapy. But last week Boo not only went into the ball pit willingly, she went in on her own.



And now we have the opposite problem. Getting her out!





Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Things that make me think...

Do you ever wonder what the heck was God thinking? And YES I know we are not supposed to question the Almighty. But I do, all the time. A while ago Rich contemplated God on the throne and then Kate thought it would be cool if He came to dinner and out burped Maria.

Their posts made me think, wouldn't it be cool to pick God's brain and try to figure out what he was thinking?  Here are just some things that I'd like to ask.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Word According to Allie

It's Monday and time to take a moment to reflect on the Word of Allie....


 
Last weekend we had a house full of company. Allie's cousin who is 4 years old told her that he loved her.


Allie looked at her Grandmother and asked: he meant as a friend, right Grandma?







Saturday, July 20, 2013

Thanks, it's been a great week

It is very difficult, some weeks, to be thankful. Heck, some minutes days are tough to get through.

But this week, was awesome. Sure it wasn't perfect. Yet I have so much to be grateful. Trust me this list is in no particular order. Every single moment I am just in awe of the week that was.

10. I stopped by a friend's house to do some PTA business. That was accomplished in under 5 minutes. Minute 6, Allie was in their pool. Minute 8, I had a Margarita in my hand. A routine night at home alone with the girls morphed into a lovely night at a friends house.

9. The freeloading second niece was born! Thankfully the two nieces have two different names and birthdays.

8. We have a wedding this weekend. An adult only wedding, mind you. One that I already have a dress for, so I won't have to go shopping (okay, David is the probably thankful for that one). I just hope I don't laugh through it.

7. This virtual world of Blog, where connections are made and kept. I adore how we check in on one another, how we support, love, cry and laugh together. If only we could figure out a way to meet for happy hour.

6. The fact that it is only Tuesday and I have so much to be thankful.

5. Boo who told me she "woe helmet" and "had bike" at school. Translated into she rode on a tricycle at school. Okay,  maybe she was pushed. But it happened and better than that, Boo TOLD me it happened!

4. And better yet, this video. Okay not of her on the bike (hey teachers reading this send me a picture!) but still wicked cool. Not only a sentence but look at the body awareness and motor planning!

video


3. That even when things don't go as planned (and I love to plan) I have friends that show me the upside.

2. I am healthy. I spent some time last week with a woman who is suffering from Lupus. She has the most upbeat attitude. She may have Lupus, but Lupus does not have her. In addition, I learned that a young woman I am friends with just learned she has cancer. She has two young children, a supportive family and a great outlook. It is times like these when I know I am blessed to be in good health. I will try to not take it for granted as often as I do.

1. That Zachary is 30% to his goal of receiving security in the form of a Service Animal. If you haven't had a chance to read his story please see it here. He was also in our local paper, so way to go Zach!





Ten Things of Thankful
 
 
 
What are you thankful for this week? It is easy, when you think about it. Focus on one thing THIS WEEK and let me know in the comments.

Oh and if you are keeping track with me: There are only 46 days left before Allie is back in school. 

Friday, July 19, 2013

5 minutes to Belong

It is time to take 5 minutes and just write without an editor. Ready, Set, Go....

Belong

I have long struggled to belong. During the school years I always felt like a misfit. Then after high school I struggled to know where I belonged. Should I go to college and follow the herd or get a job to pay the rent. I chose the job, because well rent has to be paid. Then I struggled with learning how to belong into the adult world.

I have never belonged to my own skin, always wanting to conform to be part of the pack.

When I met David I felt I belonged. I was part of a couple, a team, a family. Then came Allie and I faltered learning how to belong in the world of the mom and the worker. Never really having enough energy for both worlds.

When we had Boo I struggled again to belong. There was no community for an undiagnosed child. Sure there were doctors, therapists and family. But no one who really got it.

Then the world of blog allowed me to belong. I found kinship with other moms who struggle with their children. Allowing me to be Allie's mom and Boo's mom. Two different countries but the same world.

Belonging to the world of family has been my saving grace. Belonging, to me, means having purpose. To have similar goals and dreams. I have been blessed with knowing I belong to many worlds. All important, all loved and all supportive.

Belonging doesn't mean following the pack. It means being secure in yourself so you can share yourself with others.


I have always struggled to belong. I am glad I finally do.

END



How would you spend 5 minutes to belong?
 
Five Minute Friday

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Look

In Church, I learned to silence my family with the LOOK. All mothers obtain some variation of the look around the time your child is 2 years old. However, I was lucky to years of training with my husband.

You must understand, David loves nothing more than to make...well...inappropriate words and gestures during a service. For example:

At a wedding for a friend, I was a tad late arriving to the Church. I quietly got into the pew, knelt down next to David and he whispered in my ear:

"That Pope guy is drunk"
The poor man starts the vows and he sounded like the Priest in the Princess Bride.

http://www.quickmeme.com/meme/3s56o4/


Now, I know, the Priest most probably had a lisp. But when you are late and get told something and you have a problem with laughing at inappropriate moments (think funerals, weddings, etc) it is hard to contain the giggle.

I tried, I swear to cover it with a cough. Then friend behind and in front of me started shaking their shoulders by silently laughing at me. This of course made the giggles worse. The mother of the Bride sent me the LOOK of death and pointed to the video camera that happened to be right at the end of the pew I was sitting in.

Yup, that was me laughing during that solemn moment in your wedding. I continued the tradition by laughing through my own wedding.

Anyway at that moment I learned the LOOK. It has gotten stronger over the years as Allie began attending Church. It gets a lot more use when her dad is with us. I really do blame him for her poor manners. Because, well I'm an angel and they are spawns.

When Allie made her First Communion she was in the front pew talking to her friend. The LOOK is effective from across the Church. Until her father started doing the chair dance and pretending to eat cookies in the pew.

Each week it is an adventure to see who will get the LOOK first. Usually it is David. And then last month it happened. Boo got the LOOK. The Priest had just done something and at the top of her voice Boo proclaimed

OH COME ON

It echoed. And proved that she is the only one immune to the LOOK when she snorted and gave her belly laugh. Which of course sent the other two spawns to egg her on. I really, really wish I had Kristi's talent to draw you a picture of the LOOK. But if I could draw, this is what it would look like, except with steam coming from my ears.


So what did you learn in Church? Join me at Finish that Sentence Friday!


Finish the Sentence Friday

Would you?

A couple weeks ago Love that Max had a post asking how did you go about deciding to have another child? Some people were not so kind in their responses. More recently Jessica wrote wondering if she was being selfish having only one child.

It is weird because I get this question a lot:
If Boo was born first would I have "chanced" Allie.
I would like to say heck yes. But part of me wonders. Not that I don't love Boo nor do I wish she was anything but herself. Okay, I could live without the exploding diapers. But having a child with special needs is tough. Julie has two sons and hit (as she says) the Autism Jackpot. She loves both her boys but it is difficult sometimes. Sylvia has a nine beautiful children (yes I am in awe), one of whom has faced brain cancer, seizures and a host of other issues. She doesn't love Bethany any less than her other children. Yet even Sylvia wonders sometimes what God was thinking.

I believe, in my soul, that all children are born perfect. With any child you do not know if that perfection will be flawless. Let's face it the terrible two's disabuses you of that notion as soon as the new baby smell wears off. You might hope that your child will be a Rhodes scholar, but you don't know at day one where your child's path might take them.

Another I know, when asked if she had other children replied, no they could only handle their daughter. Her care is sapping them of their energy, their finances and their sleep. But she is also giving them love, her smile and her utter beauty of being a child who is adored by her parents. They in no way 'regret' their child, but they understand the limits of their own being.

On the flip side, J's (Boo's Yogi) first child was born with Down Syndrome. Her and her husband went on and had four more beautiful girls. Loving them all equally. Even if sometimes they are climbing on the counters, sometimes making their oldest be the easiest to raise.

Sylvia, as she is wont to do, puts it perfectly: Living with their new normal. Whether that new normal is having a child who is seemingly perfect or a child who needs a little extra.

Deciding to have another child is a personal choice. Boo was our surprise. We never imagined having a second child. Okay, David did. I was one and done. Couples decide the amount of children they have based on economics, time, age. Why should they be vilified for by putting a child's special needs into the decision process?

Parents of children with special needs do not wear rose colored glasses. They understand that their child may not go to school, go to college or move out of the family home. That their care will mean limited vacations, longer work hours, less rest and a shorter retirement.

Parents of "typical" children don't know what they are getting into either, that all of their hopes and expectations really depend on their child. You can offer a child the world and they may decide not to leave the room.

Almost parents who never get to experience the ups and downs of having children, those with and without special needs, probably feel that they would take any child just to feel a moment of that love.

I guess my point in this long ramble (I feel like I am channeling Rich!) is that having another child is a personal, sometimes heart-wrenching, decision. No one has the right answer.

When I am asked if I would have another child after Boo, my answer is no. But that is not because Boo has sometimes extraordinary needs. It is because I know we cannot handle more than what we have. Two children, a dog, a home and two working parents combined with our age? It wouldn't be the right decision for our family.

But my decision shouldn't impact yours.

You just have to decide what you can handle and leave the opinions at the curb.



 



Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Worldess Wednesday--Its a Jeep Thing

 
How do you survive 90 degree temperatures with 1 million percent humidity? 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

You don't know me...

You don't know me. You know pieces of my life through this blog. You learn about Boo, laugh with me at Allie-isms. You get a glimpse of life with a child who is special in more ways than one.

But if we passed on the street we might not recognize one another.

One of the hidden treasures of this blog is that I have "met people" from around the world. From Australia to Germany. From Arizona to Alaska. Right here in Massachusetts and close by in Virginia.

Some with children, some who hope every month to become a parent. Others who have that typical child who is frustrates, loves and makes you wonder at what they are dreaming about. The others, like me, who have a different journey. Moms that worry every day if their child will have a seizure. A mom who just had the rug taken out from under her again.

The mom who has a son with CP who surfed for the first time this year. Those of us who have one typical child  and one not so typical. (gosh, I am beginning to hate the word typical)

And I consider you all friends. Those with children, those without and everyone in between. Through our triumphs and struggles we share the joy of a first word and the tears of a rough night.

The best part of my day is when I get a private e-mail from one of you. Just to let me know you are there.

We read one another's stories and feel a connection. At least I do. A connection that makes me think, if I could have a dinner party with you we would have the best night.

I know just who will bring the wine (or for some of you the spring water), who will bring the dessert and who will make us laugh until we pee.

So cheers, my blogging friends. I thank you for being a part of our journey and thank you for sharing your own.




Monday, July 15, 2013

In Allie's words....

I have Kate at A Clean Slate to thank for this post. If you liked it, great. If not, blame her! But she thought it would be great to have a post of Allie-isms. I thought, what a great way to start the week and embarrass Allie when she is old enough to read this blog.

Since Allie has A LOT of -isms, here is the first in her new series.


When Allie was in first grade and going for her First Communion she had to learn two prayers. The Our Father and the Hail Mary. Here are her versions:

Hail Mary, full of face, the Lord is with you.
Blessed art you woman.
And blessed be your room, Jesus.
Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sunning now and at the our of our death, but I really don't want to die.
Amen.




Our father who does art in Heaven
Halloween be your name
The kingdom come
The will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven
Give us this day some bread
And forgive us our trespasses even thought I don't know what that means.
Lead us to the Shirley temples
And I will try not to be evil.
Amen


Yes, she actually made her First Communion or as her father said, Her Holy Cookie. 



Saturday, July 13, 2013

Thanks, we survived the week!

I think this is probably my favorite "hop" of the week. When Kristi, Joy and Lizzie remind me to look back at just this week and realize not only did we survive but it wasn't as bad as it seemed.

Kind of like High School. No, wait, I just looked back and it still sucked. But it didn't suck as bad as I thought!

So this week I am very thankful for

10. Air conditioning. I think my hair is more thankful than I am. But when the temperature goes from 60 to 80 with 95% humidity I am very thankful to be living in a first-world country.

9. That the first of two new nieces were born. The other one is still freeloading off her mother. I got to hold new niece H Thursday evening. Proving that I can still rock a gassy newborn and that I have no desire at all to have another one of my own.

8. Dana has finally realized that I was serious and Allie will be spending her teenage years with her.

7. My parents came up this week to celebrate the birth of H. I also think mom did it so she could spend her birthday up here with her grandkids. But H was a great excuse!

6. Boo is back in school! Enough said

5. Kate who gave me a great idea about a blog post. No I am not spoiling the surprise, just come back on Monday. Oh and she also made me rethink my Facebook activity. So she should be thanked twice!

4. Bailey who provides Boo with a soft place to land.

3. That we had a couple of days at a friend's beach house. Sure it was torture for Boo. But there is nothing more relaxing than sitting on the porch and just watching the sun set over the water.

2. That Allie has had a fantastic week with her grandparents and pseudo-grandmother. All who have spoiled her rotten entertained her this week while everyone else was at school or work.

And the final thing this week that I am thankful for.....(insert drumroll please)

1. There are only 54 days left until Allie is back in school!



 

Ten Things of Thankful

Thursday, July 11, 2013

There are heroes and then....

There are heroes and then there are SUPER HEROES. Those individuals who leapt buildings in a leaping bound, the wonder women with magical bracelets and an invisible plane.

Man, I'd like an invisible plane. That would be super cool.

When I was younger I wanted to be a member of the A-Team. I thought the Colonel Smith was the best, loving it when a plan comes together. Who wouldn't have a crush of Faceman? I wanted to big brother like BA Baracus (I thought at least one of his necklaces would look good on me). And Madman Murdock? He was just like this Uncle I had...Anyway I thought, as a tween, I would be cool and safe as a member of the A-Team.




Then I grew up.

And I realized the superheroes are not that common. That a plan doesn't always come together. That you need to sometimes be a BA to get things accomplished. I also realized something else. Superheroes come in all ages.

The woman who hugged another in an elevator.

The father who pushes his son every year in the Boston Marathon.

The soldiers near and afar who put their lives at risk every day so I can sit in my home and drink my wine.

The makers of my wine.

The grandmother who looked at a child having a temper tantrum and told the parents it does get better.

The doctors who saved my daughter's life.

The therapists who enrich Boo's life making her the best she can be.

The school teachers who have more patience than Saint Teresa.

The friends and family who answer my HELP ME calls.

The people who run into the emergency rather than running away.

But I do have one SUPER HERO....

Allie.


Who looks at her sister with love and empathy. Who has adored her sister from the moment they met.




The sister who braved multiple hospitalizations to see her baby sister. The girl that explains to other children that Boo has a "funny" pattern in her brain that makes her "special". The girl who has attended so many therapy appointments that she can run her own.  Last week, after coming home from a sleep over, Allie took the time to go through Boo's speech therapy:

Boo: I EKRJWORYOWEHFOFJSFROREEEEEEEEEE
Allie: I
Boo: I
Allie: Want
Boo: Want
Allie: To
Boo: To
Allie: Have
Boo: Have
Allie: Cookies
Boo: COOKIES!!!!!

This is a super hero at just nine years old. Allie possess the ability to calm her sister, to hold on while Boo deal with a hazmat situation, who calms a head-banging moment, helps her swing and jump. Allie is the protector and the "mad" girl who cracks Boo up with her antics.  Kind of like the A-TEAM all mixed into one little package.

It helps that she is cute beyond belief.




I hope to she maintains her membership in the hero society. I cannot wait to see how she changes the world.

Who's your hero?





" />
 


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Wordless Wednesday--Comfort

I am always amazed at Bailey's utter devotion to Boo.




Especially in 90 degree heat!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Girl you make me smile

I like smiling. There are some things though, that just make my day. The top 10 things that make me smile:

1. Boo's belly laugh.

2. Allie's sarcasm. Especially when she says she is being sarcasm.

3. Big bang theory

4. Finishing the run

5. Driving in the Jeep, listening to Jimmy Buffett






6. Kristi's pictures, especially when she writes about the perils of Botox

7. That even when it is 900 degrees outside Bailey is a willing pillow.



8. That Boo started her summer program today. Yes, her teachers and aides deserved a vacation. However I did quite the happy dance as I walked out of the school today!

9. Allie had a sleepover with her favorite pseudo-grandmother this weekend. She had a great time being a spoiled only child for 24 hours.

10. Knowing tonight will be a quiet night at home, with the girls back on their schedule after a long, very long weekend!

What about you, what makes you smile? Join me over at the Listicles. It was supposed to be the top 10 words that make me smile, but I like to bend the rules now and again. On the upside, I did the correct topic.

Okay, honestly I did start next week's topic before I realized my error!

Happy Monday everyone.




Friday, July 5, 2013

A wrap up of the 4th

The 4th of July dawned bright and early for us. Unbeknownst to David I signed us up for another almost-5k (not quite 3mi but I am fine with that). My goal is to continue having accountability. If we sign up for a race we will have to train and therefore run. Okay, he won't have to train. That man just shows up and out paces me.

The reason he lives is he doesn't lord it over me. Instead he has been really good at not letting me slow to a walk. The fact that he left the race course to hose down at a friends house and then sprinted to join me, then ran past me to talk to another friend has nothing to do with my envy.

The race was much easier without pushing Boo. She and Allie hung with Grammie while we ran. I think they had more fun. You see there is a peacock that has overtaken my MIL's neighborhood. And "Petey" has taken roost in her front yard. In the mind of only a grandmother, she brought the girls outside to see it. I am not talking about from afar either...

I'm glad I was at the race. I'm beyond ecstatic that that Boo didn't escape with the bird. And overjoyed that the bird didn't eat them. Are peacocks carnivores?

After the hot and sweaty race we picked up the girls and my MIL (leaving "Petey" at home) to attend the town parade. Boo did really well, waving and saying hello to all the floats. As long as the antique cars didn't honk their horns she was happy until....

The muster. Every year our town's fire fighters put on a muster for the kids. They fill the school field with foam and allow them to slip and slide all over the place. The kids have an absolute blast. To show you "the foam" that the families look forward to...



 
 The kids line up to be under the foam cup.
















Allie showing that she is her daddy's daughter in the thick of things!







It doesn't matter how old you are from toddlers to teens to seniors...everyone enters the foam.


 
 
 To every parent's joy the firefighters also set up a wash off station.
 
 
 
 

But these photos are from last year. Because this year, Boo was terrified of the foam. She refused to leave my arms. She was wrapped tighter than a boa constrictor. Last year:
 

This year?  In truth, I was saddened by this slight regression. That we have no photos, that she didn't enjoy herself. That Allie can't play with her little sister as the other kids were enjoying the day. Yet once the foam was gone and the hoses were put away, Boo was the happy little girl who loves to give hugs. Of course, the teens had to dry off first. But they were all so patient with her, chasing her around the now clean field.

When I think of all the strides Boo has made in the past year, the fact that I have no photos of this year's foam is bearable. This Independence Day Boo is still growing. Yes, there are regressions. Especially being out of school.

Yet Boo still amazes us. She is now independent in taking her shoes off. She can unzip her lunchbox. She can drink from a cup and can find Austin & Allie on her IPAD. Boo is engaged in her life.  Once the field was back in her comfort level, Boo was interactive with the children.  She tried to climb on the fire truck. Boo was there in the moment. 

We might struggle finding out why she is frustrated or what she is feeling or why she shuts down. But in two cases we know this for sure Boo has clearly told us what she doesn't like. Snow and Foam.




Thursday, July 4, 2013

Mike never met Boo

Yes, it has only been 48 hours since my bright idea to emulate Mike and Carol Brady. Funny it didn't take a half-a-year for me to begin failing. I know, you want to pat me on the head and say give myself a break.

But truthfully I sometimes wonder where the brakes are.

Boo has been out of her school program for just over a week. I thought going away would be a great idea. We went camping and instead of camping we dodged rain storms. Being away set off her bowel issues.

Which I was prepared for, seriously, I have enough meds to rectify either option: Hazmat or Obstruction. What wasn't I prepared for was Boo's regression to happen so quickly. Only two days home from vacation and she is no longer feeding herself, not going to bed without screaming for over an hour (whomever said that children cry themselves to sleep after 10 minutes never met Boo) and having frustration issues.

I just do not know how to calm my child. First she wants her shoes off. Okay, I can do that. Then she screams, bangs her head and throws herself to the floor because they are off. I swear she made her head spin. Maybe it was mine.


www.goldderby.com 


I caved and put them back on. Nope, she wanted them off. Then on. Then I want a cookie (her, I wanted a glass of pinot grigio--there was still some left in the box). I decide to put on therapist/mom hat and employ the ABA therapies. She wants the shoes off they stay off. She can't decide between Oreos and goldfish? She gets her first choice even if she runs away asking for a donut.

I'm done at this point. Mike is nowhere to be found. Carol, well I don't have her hair or patience. So I put on therapy hat...we will by all that is Holy employ ABA. If she wants her shoes on, then they stay on no matter how she screams. She wants cookies? Then she gets her first choice, even after she walks away screaming.

The icing on the cake? Allie comes up to me and says:

Is it times like this you wish Boo wasn't Boo?

And I break, again. I channel Carol and explain, it's not Boo that is the problem. It is that Mommy doesn't know how why Boo is screaming. Why Boo can't decide between shoes on or off.

Mommy just doesn't get it sometimes.

That Allie or Mom or Dad can't "fix" this, we just have to try anything that may work. That I have to put up with behavior I would never allow Allie to get away with. That Allie sees that Boo gets treated differently by her parents. That we have two children that we have to treat differently.

That is not Boo's fault or really mine. But that whole Catholic guilt thing...with an added dose that as a mom we are not doing quite enough makes me wonder.

Why

Why don't I have the answers. A mom is supposed to, right?

Why does Boo get so frustrated?

Why can't she use her words?

Why am I so whiny. For Cripes sake my child has words, and can walk and can show her frustration. There are so many parents out there with less.

Why, oh why must I be down?

Why the freak can't she realize she is supposed to sleep alone. Yes, she slept in my arms for a weekend camping. But that's over now. Why does it take five nights to undo two?

Why if I have to be Carol is there not an Alice? I mean, seriously people do you think Mike and Carol would have been so calm without their Alice.


Just think how much easier life would be with Alice.

There would be pork chops and applesauce. That I wouldn't have to cook or force Allie to eat.

Alice knew that the one thing not to stomach was a perfect kid. Although I wouldn't mind that perfect kid for an hour or two.

Alice knew that a five letter word for exhaustion was ALICE. Another good choice would be MOMMY

Alice, when asked an unanswerable question would reply if the right answer meant a trip to Europe. I wonder if the girls would have to go?

Anyway, I kind of got off point (are you still out there), is I wonder if this gets easier. I thought Boo's first days in the NICU were bad. Then I thought, when she threw up everything I put into her, that this was the hard time. Then and then and then....there are a gazillion times I thought life would be getting easier.

Then there was summer break.

And sleepless nights.

Wondering if I am every going to get being Boo's mom right.

And so thankful, from the bottom of my soles, that Boo is back in school on Monday.

There better not be snow.
 


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

When the Rain God's laugh (at your expense)

When you plan a vacation six-months in advance you know you may be taking a chance. You never know if there may be a birth, death, taxes, etc... When you plan a camping trip six-months in advance?

The Rain Gods chuckle.

Out loud.

Seriously they laugh harder than a virgin at a George Carlin concert if he was still alive. Wait, he might be one of those rain gods.

Can comedians become Gods? (and yes, I am secretly worried about God's thunderbolt right about now--Rich do something!)

Anyway back at the camp....In February we made our camping reservations. With the economy tanking the State Campground we usually go to gets booked in 12.5 seconds if you are not careful. Okay, probably not that fast but the past two years we have been out-booked by waiting until April to plan our vacation. This year we would be successful and not only camp but camp at our favorite site.

The day before we packed the camper to sun-filled skies. The morning we left it was 59 freaking degrees and drizzle. By the time we arrived at our camp site 8 hours later? It was a monsoon.

But we persevered. We set up the camper and immediately cracked the box of wine. Hey, I was roughing it.

Allie thought it was great (you cannot hike if the rain and mud is pushing you back down the mountain) until she realized she also could not go swimming or play in the waterfalls. However the Whoopie Pies we bought in town helped (yes, I gave my child Whoopie Pies for dinner).

Boo on the other hand had a more difficult time. It is hard when a child does not do well with sensory overload has to sit in a camper as the rain pours and pours down on top of the tin roof of a camper. Then the thunder started. And well...sleep isn't something a parent really needs.

The upside was we had a vehicle and cash. This is what I learned from three days in a camper with no electricity and a lot of rain:

Wet dogs really do smell.
I am willing to travel 3 hours in rain storm for lobster
The upside to a monsoon is that you do not have to cook over a fire pit
The downside no camp fire to drink by roast marshmallows
You can charge an IPAD in 3 hours while driving around looking for lobster
I do believe that the Chamber of Commerce pays off the weathermen for inaccurate forecasts.
Reading on my Kindle is a sure fire way for Allie to say, Mom can I play a game on your Kindle my IPOD died.
If you do get your Kindle back, you cannot read in a camper with two children, a dog and a husband who are "bored".
If needed you can spend 30 minutes hiding in the shower hitting the button that allows for a 20 second spray in the campground shower. (I recommend bringing the box of wine with you).
I am glad I decided that I want to parent like Mike and Carol after this trip and not before. PSA--do not put yourself in a situation sure to make you sound like Rosanne.
A husband can literally sleep through anything (no offense to the men out there. But you know I am right with this one.).
There are such things as mosquitos as big as my head.
Pack extra wine.



I know for sure that the Rain Gods laughed their thrones off at us as the sun came out just after we packed the camper to go home. And I laughed as I went to work on Monday morning and left David to clean the camper, the girls and the dog.





 


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

I gave up Diet coke. Can I give up something else?

About three months now (woo hoo three!) I gave up Diet Coke. It wasn't pretty, my friends. But I did it. Recently I read a great post by Jen Kehl and am going to try to give up one more thing.


Monday, July 1, 2013

Well we are half-way there

It's official. We are half-way through the year. I cannot believe six months have gone by so quickly. I feel like just yesterday I was trapped in the house with two children and no wine.

Since it is July 1st I thought it would be a good idea to see how I've been keeping those darn resolutions. Short story, it starts great but doesn't end well.