Monday, October 15, 2012

God is Great at Finding!

Whenever I've searched and searched for something and can't find it, and I find myself getting really frustrated, I pray and ask God to help me find it.  I have to say, it has worked every time!  I may not find it right away, but it eventually shows up, usually within a day or so.  And no, I don't think it's coincidence.  I believe it's God, caring about even the small things in my life.

So, the other morning I'm trying to get all the kids ready for school.  Ian wants his microphone and he can't find it.  I try to tell him he'll have to wait until after school because I don't have time to look for it.  He's gotten way better at actually looking for things himself now, but after a while of not being able to find something, he starts the whining.  ARGH!  (However, not much different than myself!)  This particular morning I decided that we would ask God to find it.  Never waste a good teaching moment, I say.  So, I told Ian we were going to pray and ask God to find his microphone.  We did just that.  I asked Him to help Ian find it before school, but if He didn't, then that I would stumble upon it during the day (because I definitely would not remember to purposefully look for it).  I continued on getting the kids ready for school and Ian seemed satisfied.

About 5 or 10 minutes later here's the conversation:

Ian:  "I found it!"
Mom: "Yea!  Who did we ask to help you find your microphone?"
Ian:  "God"
Mom: "So who should you thank?"
Ian: "God"

What a fantabulous teaching moment!  What a fantabulous boy!  What a fantabulous God!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Baseball Practice, Games, and Gymnastics

Yes, it does my heart good!  I actually get to say, "We have baseball practice", "No, can't do that because we have a baseball game", "Oh, maybe later, but at that time I have to take Avery to gymnastics".     Ahhhh, the joy of feeling like a normal mom for a bit.    Sounds crazy, I know.  But it really feels 'normal'.  Honestly, how often do I get that in my life?  Exactly.

We didn't put Ian in baseball in the spring because he complained too much about it....and it was hot.  Heat and Ian don't mix well.   For fall, I decided to sign him up and see what happened.   So far, so good.  It's Miracle League baseball, so it's not real taxing on him and they have a lot of fun.  This year, the coach has practices (Jim laughs).  But I think it works out much better because Ian gets to be with the kids more than just showing up at a game once a week.  He gets to get more involved in the game too.  He's even started to get out his baseball and bat at home (could be scary).   Basically, on practice nights, I just pack him up in the van and don't tell him where we're going.  That way he can't really think about not wanting to go.  Then on game day, I don't make a big deal as he's putting on his uniform.   If I don't make a big deal, he doesn't seem to make a big deal.   Since Jim is not exactly "Mr. Positive" with the whole thing, I've freed him from having to take him to any of the games and practices.  Works for both of us.  I get to take Ian and jabber with the other moms for an hour, and Jim gets to stay home with the other 2 kids.  :)

Avery has surprised the heck out of me with gymnastics.  A friend of hers and her enrolled for the same class, which helped her not be so nervous.  But even since the first time, she really didn't seem to have any anxiety.  After her free introductory class, she said she wanted to sign up.  It's been really good for her.  I know it's helping to strengthen her poor little low toned muscles.  She works them hard.  After her second class, she's still enjoying it and looks forward to going.  And me????  Well, I get to sit and jabber with the other moms, of course!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Chocolate Milk and Cookies - Something New

The other night after dinner, Ian wanted dessert, which is not so strange.  But he didn't want the icecream his sister was having like he usually does.  He went to the pantry and pulled out some 'healthy' cookies that Daddy kept telling him he didn't like.  He kept insisting on it.  Then, he started asking for chocolate milk, which he has NEVER done before.  We weren't quite sure where he was going with all this, but we followed along anyway.  So, he sat down with his cookie and his chocolate milk and a big grin on his face.  But wait.......

Then, he dunked his cookie into his chocolate milk!

I have no idea where he got this idea from.  I figure either at school or on one of the shows he watches.  But that little boy enjoyed that cookie and chocolate milk......and the success he had in letting us know exactly what he wanted, even though it was totally new.

Check it out!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Fellow Bloggers, Please Help Me Out

I found a blog about a month ago that I need to find again.  I can't remember if I ran across it on someone else's list, or if someone posted the particular post site on their blog.

It was a mom who did a power point presentation about introducing your child and his/her needs to the class.  I really, really want to do something like this this year, but don't want to provide 'too much or too little' information.  The post I read did a good job explaining how she did it.

So, if you know of this, please, please, please send me the link.  Thanks!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Nosey Neighbor

This adorable sight is our next door neighbor's dog, Tyson.  Our neighbor has had a few different dogs since we've moved in.  For what ever reason, they end of getting rid of them.  And each one has inevitably made it into our backyard.  I'm sure it won't be long before Tyson makes it all the way in.  They dig the ground and chew the fence.  Our poor neighbor has replaced several boards.

I personally thing they've all had a thing for Ellie (our dog).  :)

This is our nosey neighbor!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A Bit of Wisdom Please

"But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.  And the seed whose fruit is rightousness is sown in peace by those who make peace." 
James 3:17, 18

As another school year begins, so does another year of unknowns.  Three fragile X kids in three different schools.  A daughter who is great at comprehension struggles so very hard at math and is so very timid.  Youngest son who is over the charts on cuteness but struggles at obeying and rules and potty training (typical though) and impulsivity and basically anything that would create order.  Oldest son, who has been a people pleaser is now deciding to hang on the fence of rebellion....going just so far enough to get a reaction (I think he prefers negative).  This same son who generally seems to regret his actions, showing sadness & sorrow, impulsively scratches his brother and pulls his sister's hair, or messes up what sister has worked so hard on.  Three children whom I love and adore dearly and could not imagine my life without.
My dilemma?

In the school and out of the school, I MUST HAVE THE ABILITY TO EXERCISE WISDOM.  Wisdom within the fragile X realm (and many others) means overlooking some things the parent of typical kids would not.  It also means having zero tolerance for things the parent of typical kid would say "aww, cut him some slack".  Wisdom... knowing how much they can handle before it's time to take a break.  Wisdom... trying to learn about why they respond the way they do in certain circumstances, as well as knowing when I don't have to know why.  Wisdom...knowing when not to take them to a particular function because it will cause more anxiety than joy for them.  Wisdom...when to know when/how to confront a teacher or situation and when to be patient. know how to bless my daughter who, because she is not as negatively affected as the boys, takes on greater responsibilities. know how to explain why she has to do this or not but the boys do not. know how to get Ian to keep on reading this or that book, even through the whining and fits. know how to get him to eat using utensils. know how to get Benjamin to understand authority at home and at school. know how to roll with the punches (which I've gotten quite good at) and how to have fun with my children....even when that means pulling out the paints knowing full well it will end up on places that will just not wash off.  It means having fun with them sloshing around in the rain (which I like to do anyway). to balance everything and everyone in my family while at the same time making time for me.  Wisdom...making sure my husband and I get date nights and times to really connect and see how the other is doing in our mahem. not get lazy in this.  Wisdom.... even so much more.

But the most important and crucial of all is seeking the wisdom that comes from above.  All the wisdom needed listed above and all the others not even mentioned on my list can only be truly accomplished when I seek out and ask my God for that wisdom. He has given me the signs to look for to discern if I am accepting His wisdom in my life.  Read the words - I do - everytime I ask for wisdom in a situation and I try my best to be sure it encompasses these words when I follow through.....pure, peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.  If I seek out seed whose fruit is rightousness, it will be sown in peace, and I will have become a peacemaker.  What a wonderful thought!

The first day I decided to use this verse with schooling my children and with my family, I prayed over it before I started to do some school with Avery.  The result?  Well, ummm, I wish I could say it was incredible.  Instead, I was an incredible failure!  We both ended up in tears....over math!  Ugh!  But with every yuck in life comes a beautiful life lesson or two if we are willing to look for them.

1.  I always try to make it a point to model humility with my children.  I apologize whenever the time calls for it.  In this case, it screamed for it.  So I did.   She, in turn (with a little help from me), apologized for her part as well.  It was a very sweet time.

2.  God led me to another verse from James:  "He gives a greater grace." (James 4:6)   My God gives greater grace.  Grace greater.  Grace is His ability to enable me to be who He has called me to be and to do what He has called me to do.

So, basically when I fail....that's okay.  I go back to Him who gives greater grace.  I don't quit.

Monday, July 16, 2012

"Daddy, I Don't Want This" / Avery's Birthday

Okay, so my Benjamin is the one who knocked out 2 top teeth, within 3 months of each other, 2 years ago (he was only 3).  At dinner the other night, he was eating chicken.  He says, "Daddy, I don't want this."  Jim held out his hand, thinking he was going to get a piece of chicken.  Instead, he got one of Benjamin's bottom teeth!  We're not sure if it was even loose.  It was the whole tooth, root and all, that came out.  Benjamin just handed over the tooth and kept on eating!

Avery had her 7th birthday last Friday.  Her party was Saturday.  She wanted a girls only swim party at Gramma's house.  Her theme was mermaids.  If you haven't tried out Pinterest....oh, you should.  Now, I'm not one that has the time or the desire to just get on there and look and look and look.  However, if there's something specific I'm looking for, it's a great place to browse.  So, I searched for mermaid party ideas, and got a lot.

Cake/Icrecream:  I didn't get to the make the mermaid cake I really wanted to make because, amazingly enough, I do not own a fish mold.  But I was pretty happy with the cake I made.  I usually make her an icecream cake, but just didn't want to this year.  So I tried a Jello poke cake.  I used a strawberry cake and blue berry jello (I wanted part of the cake to be purple).  It was really moist and good.  The frosting is a recipe a friend gave me.  I won't use any other frosting now.  It's just instant pudding mix and whipping cream.  You can use any flavor.  I used vanilla so I could use food coloring to color it.  It was supposed to be blue, but turned out green.  It worked.  It is the best tasting frosting (IMO), and so easy to manipulate on the cake.  I got the icecream idea from Pinterest.  I absolutely hate the serving mess of icecream at parties, which is why I typically make an icecream cake.  But this idea saved the mess.  It's pre-dipped scoops in cupcake cups.  Just pull 'em out of the freezer when you're ready to serve up the cake!  Fabulous!  (the waves are a bit funky looking, but Avery knew they were waves)

Decorations:  Since it was a swim party, I didn't do a lot with decorations.  We hung blue and green streamers at the front door, so it kinda seemed like they were entering through water.  We also hung a sign welcoming all the mermaids to Avery's party.  Then I made fish balloons that I found on Pinterest and hung them throughout the house.  So cute, and so easy!

Food:  We did the party in the evening (after dinner time) and decided to do snacks.  You guessed it....I found the ocean-related snack ideas on Pinterest, as well as the cute labels (which my mother-in-law made up on her computer).  I actually ended up puting the 'octopops' with the goodie bags instead of on the snack table.  The only thing I forgot to label was the lemonade (which was gonna be 'ocean water').  I put the snacks in sand toys and sand bucket and used shovels for some for scoops.

We had a really good time and everything was so easy to do.  The only things we missed were all her little male friends.  But she sure like all the girly attention!

Avery Saying:  We were in the car and Avery was in the backseat reading.  This is part of what she read out of Purplicious (however it's spelled).  "I wrote with my pink pen in my pink diarrhea."  I laughed so hard I couldn't even tell her what was so funny!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Toothless Benjamin and Brave Avery

So a few years ago I posted about Benjamin knocking out a tooth at the denist office and then less than 3 months later, knocking out the one right next to it on one of our barstools.  I think that happened when he was 3.  He's now 5.  He's gotten quite used to the 2 missing teeth on top.  Well, now he has to get used to a missing one on the bottom.

We were eating dinner the other night (chicken).  Benjamin reached out his hand to his daddy and said, "Daddy, I don't want this."  Jim obviously thought it was just a piece of the chicken.  But upon closer observation, he realized it was a tooth.  Sure enough, we opened his mouth to find a little blood and an empty space on the bottom.  At least this one was harmless and included zero tears.  Benjamin just gave it to his dad and kept on eating.

Avery got a couple shots this morning.  I held off telling her she'd be getting them til last night.  Of course, the questions came flooding.  Here's the conversation in a nut shell:

Mom: Avery, you'll be going to the doctor in the morning.
Avery: Will I have to get a shot?
Mom: Yes, honey, you will.
Avery: How many?
Mom: Two
Avery: Well, one in this arm and one in this arm?  Or two in this arm (point to right arm)?  Or two in this arm (point to left arm)?
Mom: Well, I'm not sure.
Avery: I'm scared.
Mom:  You can bring one of your dolls to help comfort you if you want.
Avery: (giving me a big hug) Mommy, I already have my's you!

Can everyone say, "AWWWWWW!!"

She did great!  A few tears before the shots began.  But I led her through how to be a little more relaxed. My brave little girl just smiled after each of them (one in each arm, BTW) saying, "I barely even felt that!  Her first words after the last shot were, "Can we go get icecream?"   How could I say no to that?

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Stitches and Poster Child

So, I go out with a girlfriend the other night.  We're on our way home and Jim calls me to tell me Avery has cut her eye.  He thinks it might need stitches.  We get home and sure enough, small but deep gash above her eyebrow.  We both freak at the thought of how much she would freak at the thought of stitches.  Shots are horrifying enough for her.  So Jim kindly says, "You take her".  Thanks.  Luckily, my dear friend offers to go with us.  We calm Avery down and she sweetly reminds herself that mommy and daddy will do what they know is best for her.  Fast forward.....

We're at the children's urgent care.  No tears so far.  They have put a numbing gel on the wound.  The stitcher guy is great!  On her level, he basically tells her everything that's going to happen.  He gives her an I-touch to watch.  He never even had to give her a shot of more numbing stuff... the gel did the job.  Fast forward.....

Five stitches later......Avery is standing in front of the door.  I asked her to move away before someone banged the door on her and she had to get more stitches.  She looks at me with this blank stare and asks, "Did I get stitches?"  I say yes.  She says, "I didn't even cry!!"

I was sooooooo proud of her.  So at 11:30pm, I treat her to a Sonic shake.  By the time we got home at midnight, she (we) was one tired little princess.

Who's the poster child you ask?  That would be Ian.  We've dubbed him the new poster child for Costco's Deli Chicken Salad.  We took Ian and Avery shopping at Costco with us (Ian did fabulous!  What a helper!).  They have samples around the store.  We stop to sample the chicken salad.  Typically, Ian like chicken salad, so we let him have the cracker with the salad on it.  He takes a bite.  As the guy is raving about how great the chicken salad is, Ian proceeds to vomit his up....luckily there was a trash can handy.  Yep, people who were on their way to get their sample....walked on by.   :)

Friday, June 1, 2012

Seriously? Vomit the last day?

Well, we are officially on summer vacation today.  Avery's school ended the 15th.  The boys' ended yesterday.

Although I know I'll still see the teachers in the hallways next year, it was so hard to say goodbye to Benjamin's teachers.  We've had this team for 5 years (3 with Ian, 2 with Benjamin).  They are incredible.  Hard to believe there will be no more PPCD for us.  It's on to kindergarten for my little Benjamin.  He walked out of school a happy little idea it was his last day. :)   He'll start ESY on the 11th and go for a whole whopping 8 or so days.  (Thank you very little to the school 'budget').

Ian went out with a bang.  Well, more like, with a gag.  Jim got a call from his teacher about 2 hours before the end of the school day.  He had vomited at lunch so I needed to pick him up.  I know if a kid vomits, they have to assume he's sick.  Well, joke's on them.  He just's what he does.  He probably didn't like a particular smell in the cafeteria (can you blame him?).  So, I went to get him.  I can honestly say that this was the worst school year I've experienced with any of my kids so far.  It's not that the teachers/admins were not nice.  Hard to explain, but I'm sure most of you can relate.  I've learned a lot from the year though.  I took a lot of notes of how to and how not to handle certain things.

But, as for Ian, he had a happy year.  Overall, that makes me happy.  I was sad the last day because coming home early meant he would not get to say bye to the bus driver and assistant.  They were great!  Ian had them cracking up everyday when he got off the bus.  Ian starts ESY in July.  I'll have to be sure to blog about that's a whole new way for him this year.  It's a collaboration with YMCA camp.  Hmmmmm.  I had a meeting with the lady who heads the program on the school side.  Sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet lady!  Loved her!   Jim and I went back and forth about having him go or not, after learning some new information that we weren't informed of in the ARD meeting.  In the end, we decided to give it a try.  If all works well in a couple of areas, I think it'll be great for Ian.  Is there EVER going to be a time when there aren't any worries about the things he does?   Ever?   Yeah, probably not.  :)   That's okay....he's worth every bit of it!

Goals for the summer?

Avery:  Learn to ride a bike (yes, we're slackers!);  Learn to swim (swim lessons start next week)
Benjamin: Potty training (still, argh!) - I'll be happy with pee'ing in the potty.....poop in the potty would be a plus.
Ian:  Wake up later than 5:00 A.M.

Here's a few pics of boys during their awards programs:

Saturday, May 12, 2012

7 Years Ago

As the day comes to a close, I reflect once more of this date 7 years ago...the day my life and dreams changed forever....our first (of 3) diagnosis of fully mutated fragile x syndrome.  To this date, I still remember it as if it were yesterday.  I remember my mom in town for Mother's Day, sitting on the couch next to me when I received the phone call.  I remember the confusion, the fear, the anger, the sadness, the unknown.

Now seven years and 2 more diagnoses (sp?) later, I still fight the same thoughts, but only occasionally now.  Our pastor did a teaching last week about the grace of God that was fabulous.  He defined the term on a whole new and more mature level than I had ever heard before.  "Grace is God's empowering presence enabling you to be what God has created you to be and to do what he has created you to do."  I would say this fits perfectly with how I have survived the last 7 years....His empowering presence enabling me.

I hate fragile x.  There, I said it.  But I love, love, love my children; every tiny ounce of them!  While 'typical' families celebrate grand accomplishments because the 'little' things just happen naturally, I have learned to celebrate every accomplishment, knowing that nothing they do is to be taken for granted.  I have learned that I don't have to stop and give excuses to every person that looks at me if Benjamin screams in the store or Ian decides he's going to kiss a trash can (yes, actually happened).  Do I feel a bit uncomfortable?  Ummm, sure.  But I get over it.  And I don't mean to sound rude, but if I can get over it, so can those people looking that know nothing about my child.  I have learned not to 'judge' other parents when I see their child 'misbehaving' in public.  To be totally honest, it kinda makes me feel more normal. :)  I also have a lot more compassion for them, and if they see me looking, I just smile to let them know it's okay.  There's so much more I've learned as well.

There are still so many unknowns, but I try to take them one day at a time.  Some days I even make it through without thinking about one of those unknowns.  I try to remember the 'knowns'.  I know my children were meant for me.  I know I was meant for my children.  I know I love my children.  I know they love me.  Seriously, what more could I ask for?  Just look at those beautiful, happy children at the top of my page!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Benjamin Turned 5

I absolutely cannot believe it. I know we always say our kids grow up so fast. Well, it's true. Yes, I know he's only 5, but he's my baby. That means the last one to turn 5. I really just want to freeze him, as is. Period.

So, on his birthday we all met the grandparents up at McDonald's for dinner and playtime. As usual at McD's, the company was great, food was gross. But kids liked the food, so there you have it. Afterward, we went to grandparents for a swim. My kids love to swim! My goal is to get them out of arm floaties as soon as possible. Not sure how long that will be, but I'll be glad when it happens. I think Avery will be out of them after her swim lessons this summer. After the swim we had icecream sandwiches for dessert. Then the kids were WIPED OUT. Oh, they tried to make out like they weren't tired. But when their heads hit the pillow.....OUT LIKE LIGHTS. For his gift, we got him a tent and little lanterns and a baseball mitt. Grandparents got him a sleeping bag, water cantine, binoculars, and camping chair. Our goal is to camp outside sometime during the weekend. Benjamin is our total outdoor kid.

Last night Benjamin had his 'friends' birthday party. So much fun! We had 20 kiddos come (and parents of course). We planned on it being an outside party, so thank goodness God blessed us with great weather for it. With the bounce house we rented, we also have a trampoline, swingset, and sandbox. So, because the kids were all dispersed out, it went really, really well. We served Benjamin's favorite meal in the whole world...peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fruit, and chips. I made a tent cake and cupcakes for dessert (with icecream of course). We had a great time! Happy birthday my little Boo-Boo!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Those *#!%@#! Fire Ants!

What do I hate about our area of Texas? FIREANTS! They sent Ian to the emergency room several years ago, and they continue to foster fear in my heart and mind every summer! This year, because winter basically decided to skip us, the little useless suckers are out earlier. We have Epipens, Benadryl liquid, and Benadryl cream always on hand...except yesterday.

Avery came running in from the backyard telling me that Benjamin got bit by fireants. I asked her how she knew they were fireants that bit him. She said because she saw him pick up the mound and then heard him screaming. Oh my! I ran out and got him. Sure enough, the mound and the ants were all over his hands. Panic attack! Ran into the bathroom and cleaned him up. Put cream on him. Had no liquid! Instead of overreacting with the Epipen (which can be a dangerous thing), I watched him for a while. When Ian got attacked, every part of his body began to swell tremendously. Benjamin's hands and arms were bit pretty badly. They were all red and swollen. But as time went on (and many, many, many tear), I saw no swelling anywhere else. By the end of the day, all I could see were little bites. Whew!

When I got the full story from Avery, she told me he picked it up thinking it was just dirt to throw. Poor little guy!

Did I mention....I HATE THOSE THINGS!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me!

I love my K1 friends (verbage compliments of Mrs. M)! Thank you for such a fun night. I absolutely love your company.

Monday, March 26, 2012

It's Been a While

Man, I can't believe it's been such a long time since I've been on here. Hope someone still reads it. :)

Not too much to report. Mostly still worrying about school situations for next year...nothing new. Had Benjamin's ARD meeting today. Went well. He'll be in the ABLE Kindergarten Supported program. Can't believe he'll be 5 next month and in kindergarten in the fall. Too much to handle. He's my baby.

Ian's ARD meeting is scheduled for next month. We wanted to meet with the diagnostician before the meeting to discuss some things we would like to see done for next year. It's like calling a meeting of Congress just to do that. It can't just be with the diagnostician. The classroom teacher, Special Ed teacher, and the district Spec. Ed. person have to be there. Seriously?! All they really do is use a bunch of 'educational jargon' to totally confuse the poor parent. I bet 9 out of 10 parents leave an ARD meeting not having a clue about what was just said to them. O.K. soapbox done. Funny, it didn't seem as confusing when I was on the teaching end of it. :) Hmmmm.

My mother-in-law and I share the same birthday (obviously not the same year). And today is that day. So happy birthday, my sweet MIL!

Here are a few pics.

Beautiful feet, compliments of my awesome friend, Rian. Thanks so much, my friend! Are you wearing your toe ring? BFF

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Quiet on the Homefront

Really not a lot going on this first month of the new year. Kids are struggling with allergies that are leading to ear infections, but nothing a little antibiotic and love can't cure.

Transitioning back to school was a breeze for the kids...thank goodness. Mom had a pretty easy time of it too...except the having to get up early, make lunches, and get them ready to get out the door on time. But, I managed to get back into the swing of things okay.

Notes from Ian's school have slowed down A LOT! When I get them, I don't generally reply anymore. I just mumble to myself and initial the day. Really I don't see the point in why they feel the need to write me everytime he, "had a good morning in Mrs. X's class and Mrs. Y's class, but he had a rough afternoon". Please tell me exactly what 'rough' means? If it means he got overstimulated and was loud and maybe annoyed a kid or two, well then I think we're working on two different perspectives of 'rough'. Oh well.

He's doing well at home. He really tries to communicate better, does his homework with me pretty well, and is wanting to do so many more things independently....some I wish he wouldn't try quite so hard at. :) He's also still staying in the same underwear all day (but changing them daily :).

Avery and Benjamin are truckin right along. Benjamin is getting more and more, ummm, what's the word???? Obstinent. Yeah, that seems like the right word. But, darn it, he's still so cute about it!

Avery is still our little princess.....with attitude. She's gonna be a great story-teller one day. The girl will spend 20 minutes straight telling me a story...usually about her "friend", her "friend's baby", her "baby", or her "husband". It's exhausting trying to stay up with it all.

That's about it. I guess sometimes 'non-exciting' is the way to go.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

So Proud

Well we just hit 2 weeks off school. Ian and Benjamin go back tomorrow. I have to say, I usually get really anxious when I know we're going to have that much time off. And this time was no different.

However, the kids did so incredibly well over the time off. That was even traveling by car out of state too. We had no major meltdowns or injuries. There was lots of time of playing nicely together. No illnesses. Wow, what more could I ask for? I would say the biggest problem was when we were with another smaller family member who has a hard time 'understanding' Ian anyway. That was par for course and nothing unusual.

I also forgot to mention that we increased Ian's dose of clonidine to a .2mg pill a day. He still takes 1/4 of the pill in the A.M. and afternoon, and 1/2 pill at bedtime. We're thinking this increase may have contributed to Ian's positive behavior. He's never had the dose increased since he started taking it a couple years ago.

Another step in the right direction is that while we were out of town, Ian decided that instead of saying 'shut-up' (which he picked up and brought home from school - getting disciplined when he'd say it), he would say 'be quiet'. We praised him a lot for this and are very proud of him. We still catch him saying 'shut-up' every once in a while. And he still gets in trouble for it. Now we have to get Benjamin to stop saying it!

On 3 different occasions (not in a row), Benjamin has come to me to tell me he has to go potty and then goes to the bathroom and does it! Treat time!!!!! On of those times he was in the bathtub and told me he had to pee. So I told him to get out and pee. He did. Now that would make any mama proud!