Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
I finally got around to going to school to visit with the girls during their lunch. They had been asking all week, and I had yet to make it. So, today I decided I would do it. The problem is that I was supposed to meet Rachel's PT at the house at 12:30pm for Rachel's therapy. We only meet once a month-I will use that as my excuse. Well, at some point in the morning I forgot all about the appointment and totally missed the therapist because I was with Allison at her lunchtime. I felt so bad for forgetting that. I had been doing so good with all of my appointments this week, and it was the last one for the week! Oh, by the way, my mammogram went well this morning, and the doctor said I did not need to come back again until my regular yearly appointment. Yea!!
I am proud to say that Leah was student of the month in her class. The teachers pick one student each month out of their class. This is the second time that Leah has gotten this award in two years. In five years at Suntree, Allison got her first award this year, so it is not just given to every child in the class. Leah constantly complains about having to go to school, but seems to be doing well.
Rachel made it all week wearing her "big girl" underwear! She did not have a single accident at school, and I think she only had two here at home-three at the most. I am so excited. Now, if she would just decide to go to the potty on her own, we would be set. She never initiates a trip to the potty. She will even say no when you ask her if she needs to go, but if you take and put her on the potty, she will go. If you wait too long between trips to the potty, she will go in her undies. She is making progress, though, and for that I am thankful!!
Have I mentioned that Allison wants a hamster? She has been begging for one for quite some time. Finally, after Christmas, we set up a rewards program for her to earn a hamster. She has been doing great with it and doing lots of things around the house to earn points. It has really been nice! I have been very proud of how grownup she had been behaving. I think she is starting to tire of the whole thing, though. This last week, she has been very argumentative and very defiant-back to her old self so to speak. This has resulted in a week of grounding-that started on Monday and went through today-and as of last night, the whole hamster thing got put on hold. Allison is a very difficult child at times and will refuse to give in and do what she is told to do. It is so frustrating to watch her dig herself into a hole. When it is all said and done, she blames me and Mike for the whole thing. "If we just wouldn't be so mean, she would not have to be grounded, yelled at, etc.......... I am so dreading the teen age years!
Mike called me at lunch today to tell me he had to make a trip to South Carolina and would be leaving this afternoon. As I type this, he is en route. Thank goodness I am not working and having to try to do something with the kids at the last minute. That was always so stressful!! He is not sure when he will be back. Right now, he says he may get back tomorrow or Sunday. Soooo, I guess it is just me and the girls for a night or two. We did not have any plans for the "big" weekend, anyway. I just don't see the draw of the Superbowl. I kept thinking I needed to call my sister and talk her into renting out her house to some silly person that travelled to Tampa to see the game. They were saying, on the radio, that people were renting out their houses for some pretty hefty prices.
Anyway, hope everyone has a great weekend.........after highs in the upper 80s yesterday, we are heading into a rather cool weekend. I hope it is not too cold when Rachel goes to her horseback riding tomorrow. I think they are saying we will be getting down around the 39 or 40 tonight! Yuck!!
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Hope everyone had a nice weekend. Our weather finally warmed back up. After two weeks of "winter" I am officially done! I was so glad to get back to the warm temperatures again. The girls had a good weekend. Allison had a slumber party to go to on Friday night. It started at 7:00pm. When I took her over and dropped her off, Leah went with me. The birthday girl has a sister that is Leah's age and they were in class together last year. Needless to say, Leah came home bummed out that Allison was getting to have all the fun and she had "nothing fun to do!!" Shortly after we got back to the house, Allison called from the party and wanted to know if Leah could spend the night too. After talking with the mom and Leah (as if I had to ask her if she wanted to go), we took Leah over to the party to spend the night with her little friend. There is no way I would have let Allison do that in first grade, but now that Allison has done it, it doesn't seem so scary to let Leah do it too. Allison was such a sweet big sister to let Leah go. I asked Allison if she would be okay having her little sister around her friends, and she said it was fine. Despite all their arguing and fighting I think they may actually like each other. Sometimes I really wonder.
Saturday morning was Rachel's horseback riding. It was so nice to get up and just have to deal with Rachel. It is so easy to just have to deal with one. I think I will try to work out another slumber party for the big girls!! The slumber party turned into "the party that would not end." Mike went to pick the girls up at noon when the invitation said the party was over, but the cake had not been cut, the presents had not been opened and the girls asked to stay longer. They said they would call when they were done. Finally, at 2:30pm. I went and picked up the girls even though they had not called. The birthday girl had still not opened the presents!! The girls did not not protest about leaving, so I think they were actually ready to come home.
Sunday morning we went to church. I assist in Allison's 3-4 grade class. They have it set up so that you teach a month and then off a month. This was my last Sunday to teach until March. That is a relief! Kids are such brats these days. The boys in the class could not sit still and be quiet if their lives depended on it. It makes for a long hour and a half. Sunday afternoon Leah and I went to the grocery store. I have no idea why Leah thinks she likes to go to the grocery store. I hope she keeps thinking like that, because when she get older I can send her to the store and not have to go! She had a good time taking all the coupons that are scattered around the store and taste testing all the samples of fruit in the produce department.
Today I got the girls off to school and then went to volunteer for Allison's teacher. At noon, I picked up Rachel and ran to downtown Melbourne to see about getting her glasses fixed. She had broken the little rubber nose piece....again. Fortunately, it only cost $5 to replace. Much to my dismay, the shop was closed for lunch, figures! I am not sure when I will get back down there. The rest of the week is busy with volunteering and appointments. I have to go back for my follow up mammogram on Friday, to see if the spot they notice in October has changed or not. It is going to be a busy week.............
Thursday, January 22, 2009
I had to laugh yesterday. The girls came home and told me that this cold weather sucks because they were not able to go out for recess yesterday and have been told that they will stay in again today. In Minnesota, the school sent a note home with Allison saying that the kids would be going out to recess until the wind chill hit -10 degrees. -10 degrees vs 45 degrees.......not much difference I guess. The girls' school is unusual, in that it is all outside. There are not halls. There is no gym. To get to another room, cafeteria, library, etc., you have to go outside. It was pretty chilly walking between buildings yesterday. Fortunately, this is not the norm!! Most of the time it is a pleasant walk around campus.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Monday, January 12, 2009
As the weekend approached, the girls started talking about going to Seaworld. We had thought about going last weekend and didn't, so the girls were ready to try it again this weekend. I finally remembered to check the expiration dates on our Fun Passes, and sure enough, they expired December 31st....thanks for telling me to check on that, Jane. I am so glad that we did not get to Orlando and find that out. We would have had to turn around and come home! That certainly would not have gone over well with the girls, to say the least!
After that realization, Allison decided to start in on the whining. "We never get to do anything...........!" So we decided to go kayaking on Sunday. We have one kayak, but it just seats two, so we rented a second kayak so that all five of us could go and went up to an area called Thousand Islands. It was a neat place. We only saw a little of it because it is a really large area and we had three kids in the boats. "Why does it make a difference with three kids?"you might ask. Well, that would be because the kids want to sit in the boat and eat while the grownups paddle. Actually, Allison is a pretty good little kayaker, but Leah is not into the paddling at all. Rachel loved putting her hand in the water as the kayak cruised along. She did that when she was not eating. She also wanted to sit in my lap while I paddled the kayak. I don't have any idea how many times I clocked her in the head with the paddle. It didn't seem to bother her though, she just kept eating! We got to see some really neat birds and even a manatee. Actually, I am the only one who saw the manatee, and it was for only a brief second as it came up to take a breath. It was interesting kayaking too. For the most part, we were in approximately 6-12 inches-yes, inches-of water!! The tide was really low and it was difficult to find areas that were deep enough to kayak across. After a while of cruising around, I took Rachel's life jacket off. It just seemed silly to make her sweat it out in life jacket while we paddled around in 6 inches of water.
I almost forgot to mention the fun we had when we paddled up a narrow channel. We saw a spider web glistening in the sun and thought it was really pretty....it was an omen, but we missed it! A couple of minutes later, I look up over my head to see bunches of spider webs spanning over the channel, just inches above our heads, and guess what was in all those spider webs?!?! Lots and lots of spiders. I HATE SPIDERS!! Turns out, Leah does too. We could not get out of there fast enough!! It is hard to maneuver a kayak when you cannot raise the paddle tip above your shoulders . Every time I tried to paddle I would hit the spider webs over my head and jostle all those spiders around. I just kept waiting for one to fall on my head.
At some points during the trip we let the girls get out a scout around. The had a great time playing around and looking for interesting things. We will have to go back there sometime. Below are some pictures from the trip.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Well, winter break is over. The girls went back to school today. They were none to happy about it. On Sunday the 28th we went to the beach for about an hour. One of the neighborhood girls went with us. I was sure the girls would not get in the water, but they went right in! It is a little chilly, but it didn't even slow them down. As you can see from the pictures, Leah had a lovely time. She is never very excited to go to the beach, and she kept stepping on rocks in the water, so she was grouchy. Rachel loves going to the beach. She does not really care about getting in the water, but she loves to walk up and down the beach, and up and down the beach......and up and down the beach. I try to look for neat shells on our walks, but she is often so fast that I just have to try to keep up with her.
Monday and Tuesday Mike worked all day, so the girls and I just hung out around the house and took down Christmas decorations. Wednesday, Mike took off early and we all headed over to Tampa to help Jane celebrate her birthday. The girls LOVE to go over there to see their cousins!!! We got to Jane's, grilled hamburgers and hot dogs and called it a night. We all managed to still be awake at midnight, but it was not because we wanted to be. The girls just get so wound up when they are together!
New Year's Day Jane had to work, so we stayed at her place and watched her girls. We loaded everyone up and headed to the zoo where Jane works. It is really nice and we saw lots of neat stuff. It is also fun to have a connection at the zoo to take you behind the scenes. We got to hand feed monkeys, check out the manatees in the zoo hospital, and watch Jane feed the chimps and orangs. It is too funny to see those great apes recognize Jane and try to get her attention. We ate dinner at Jane's and then headed home, getting home around 11:00pm. The girls were worn out!
Friday Mike was back at work. I kept telling myself that I was going to get some cleaning done around the house, but it never happened. Saturday was Leah's birthday. She turned 7!! We did a little party with cake and presents. At first we planned on going to Seaworld for the afternoon, but Leah decided she wanted to stay home and play with her new stuff-a new Wii game. Later Saturday afternoon, we all went biking to a playground nearby-sort of nearby, it take 45 minutes on bikes to get there, be it is a really nice little ride, and the playground is perfect for Rachel. Sunday after church we went to a nearby park and let the girls play on another playground and then we went on the hiking trails that wind around the park. Allison had a great time because she LOVES that kind of stuff. Rachel thought is was great, because she is so into that walking thing. She was walking and giggling. She was also trying to collect sticks. She managed to carry four, before she reached her limit.
Monday the kids just laid around the house dreading the start of school on Tuesday. This morning we jumped back into our routine! I got the kids to school and ran to a dentist appointment. Tomorrow, Rachel and I will load up before dawn and drive to Jacksonville. It is 150 miles away, we are supposed to be there around 8:00am. We are going to the Down Syndrome Center for a check up. They are a wonderful group of therapists and doctors who work exclusively with children with Down Syndrome. They are a great source of information!! They (PT, OT, ST, education specialist and an MD) will do an assessment of Rachel and mail a report to us in about six weeks to tell us the best thing to do for Rachel at this time. Should be an interesting, but long, day.