Saturday, May 19, 2007

Good reason to buy a stamp...

So you can write your representative to encourage them to co-sponsor the Breastfeeding Promotion Act. Here's a link to the article on The Lactivist which includes links to find out if your representative is currently a co-sponsor or to find your representative's e-mail or office address so you can send your own letter.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Let's hear it for the boy!

Michael put his crocs on by himself this morning. Het put them both on the floor and started to step into them. I told him he was putting them on the wrong foot and he stopped, moved over and put them on the correct foot!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Note to self...

When voting with your button-obsessed son in tow, it would behoove you to make sure he can't actually reach any of the buttons on the voting machine. We went to vote last night and I had Michael in between the two voting booths while John and I were in them. He scooted forward in the stroller and pressed the "VOTE" button on John's machine before he actually got a chance to vote.

My son, the anarchist in training :)

Monday, May 14, 2007

I aten't dead

This has just been a week - lots of procrastinating and many ups and downs. Most days were spent putting off the two and a half mile walk to go to Walmart (I know - I hate it too) and AC Moore. Michael is just getting over the croup for which I'm sure I have the screwy weather to thank for. He also fell down the steps on Friday, once again putting the kibosh of the aforementioned walk. No lasting damage (thank God) and the carpet burn on his face is almost gone.

On Thursday I decided to go up to the fabric district to get some fabric for a quilt swap I'm participating in (and again avoid going to Walmart). I didn't get to cutting it up to mail on Thursday or Friday because of other life events, so I laid it out on the table on Saturday morning. It's stained and I am so pissed! Since returning it involves a hour and a half of my life, I'm just sucking it up. My mom picked up another four yards of fabric at Joanns for me on Sunday and my sister dropped it off for me. When this is done, I'll be cutting both up and mailing them this afternoon - I'm hoping that the marks on the first fabric will come out in the wash and if they don't they can be worked around. I think this will be my last swap for a while outside of the magic yarn ball swaps - it's too hard for me to get places that sell this stuff and those that I can get to are ones that are not stroller friendly. The fabric shop I went to in the fabric district was the only one I could even fit the stroller into and I wasn't able to watch the guy cutting it so that's why I missed the damage though I am still angry that they sold it to me in that state.

I have a full plate of knitting in front of me that has to be knocked out this week but shouldn't be all to hard to get done. The only thing that will potentially interfere with the knitting in my (drum roll please) new Nintendo DS and Pokemon Diamond game. My gem of a husband gave me his super-secret money last week so I could buy it. Mother's Day was very nice and relaxing. Lastly, I can't go into details, but any good vibes you can send my way so I can pass them onto my friend would be greatly appreciated.

Fabric needs to be cut and Pokemon need to be caught...

Friday, May 04, 2007

Just some foolin'

Your Five Factor Personality Profile


You have low extroversion.
You are quiet and reserved in most social situations.
A low key, laid back lifestyle is important to you.
You tend to bond slowly, over time, with one or two people.


You have medium conscientiousness.
You're generally good at balancing work and play.
When you need to buckle down, you can usually get tasks done.
But you've been known to goof off when you know you can get away with it.


You have high agreeableness.
You are easy to get along with, and you value harmony highly.
Helpful and generous, you are willing to compromise with almost anyone.
You give people the benefit of the doubt and don't mind giving someone a second chance.


You have medium neuroticism.
You're generally cool and collected, but sometimes you do panic.
Little worries or problems can consume you, draining your energy.
Your life is pretty smooth, but there's a few emotional bumps you'd like to get rid of.

Openness to experience:

Your openness to new experiences is high.
In life, you tend to be an early adopter of all new things and ideas.
You'll try almost anything interesting, and you're constantly pushing your own limits.
A great connoisseir of art and beauty, you can find the positive side of almost anything.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Let the Great Organizing of the Stash Begin

In the beginning there was the wife and then there was was the yarn.

The wife looked upon the yarn and said, "I will use this yarn to make fine hand knits!"

The wife did knit with the yarn and it was good

And low there came a time when the wife visited a yarn shop and beheld a vast multitude of yarn.
The wife saw that she must posses this yarn, for it was yummy.
"I have not a pattern or needles with which to work this yarn!" cried the wife.
But then the wife saw that the yarn was on sale.
"I will buy this yarn and keep it until I find something to make with it, for it is a bargain" said the wife with great satisfaction.
And thus the stash was born.

The husband beheld the stash as it spread through the house.
"Wife," said the husband. "Could you put away some of the yarn?"
Did the husband not see the great number of things that she might wish to knit at any given time and how inconvenient it would be to have to go digging through any number of boxes to find that most yummy yarn? Could he not agree that she had to have so many projects on the needles at once because she had no idea what she might be in the mood to work upon that day?
The husband sighed, for this was why he loved her, but the stash was grating upon his nerves. The wife saw that the husband had a point and vowed to organize and go upon a yarn diet.

Months passed and the stash grew yet again for there were many great sales.

"Wife," he asked with great trepidation, "I cannot sit upon our sofa without poking myself with a knitting needle. Might you perhaps organize the stash?"
The wife saw that the husband had a point and vowed to organize the stash and go upon a yarn diet.

Months passed and the stash grew yet again for the wife had unlocked the secret to bringing forth socks.

"Wife," said the husband. "Our son cannot use the little table we bought for him because it is covered in great bins of yarn. Something must be done."

The wife vowed to do something about it this time.

Months passed and the stash grew yet again for the wife must have yarn that she may dye it with her own hands.

The husband just sighed for he knew not what to do.

The wife saw that the great festival of sheep and wool was nigh and that the stash must be tamed. It was with much cursing of Microsoft that the wife did create a database with which to catalog the stash. The yarn spun from wool hath been weighed and that of the cotton is next. Those fibers wrought from plastics will have to wait until after the great festival as will the upate of crafting that she hath promised many times.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

This is really neat

Last night we went out for a walk to the grocery store. Michael kept waving his hand and making a high-pitched noise. John asked him what he was waving at and after a few tries we figured out he was pretending that he was talking to Fido, Shane's pet fly on The Upside Down Show. The rest of the trip was spent with Michael and John passing Fido back and forth. It was just so neat.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

It was an adventure

I really have to stop falling into full-blown avoidance mode, dealing with this stuff is so much easier when you've had more than four hours of broken sleep.

Right as we were getting ready to leave this morning it started to rain. I had two options - take the subway or bus without the stroller or walk and probably get there soaking wet. We took the subway. Of course, as soon as we got off, it had stopped raining.

The ride up was great. We hit our first mini-meltdown when we had to go up the stairs instead of exploring the station, then we had another when I told him we had to walk this way instead of that. I was getting more than a little tense and terse by the time we had walked the five blocks to Starbucks. I got my coffee, he got some juice, and we both got rid of our sweaters. Walking to the library from Starbucks was a breeze, completely different from the walk there. We got to the library and Michael seemed so collected, a state he doesn't normal achieve until much later. The OT and I decided that he could play on the computer rather than doing our normal story time prep in the room. This was a mistake.

The next forty minutes or so was almost one big long meltdown. No matter how much we tried to prepare him or distract him, he didn't understand why he had to stop playing with the computer and go to story time. We would bring him into the story time room and he would become hysterical. I tried everything in my bag of tricks to work with him and nothing did. Both John and the OT were very surprised and thought something must really be up with Michael. I told the OT and reminded John that this wasn't all that abnormal, it's just one of those things that I have changed our lives around to avoid. If he didn't have OT this morning and we weren't working on this very type of transition, I would have A. just let him play on the computer while everyone was in story time or B. packed him into the stroller and left until he and I had calmed down.

I feel like I failed him and me by not doing one of those things - just telling the OT outright that this wasn't going to work today. It was good practice despite how hard it was. Flight is great but there are going to be some times when I can't use it to save us and I have to have some other strategies in place. I also learned that I can take him on a short train or bus ride by myself without the stroller which will open up a lot of activities for us.

The OT was really impressed with my patience and the fact that I recognized that he truly didn't understand why he had to stop playing with the computer rather than chalking it up to defiance. I think this is one of Michael's biggest delays and one that is very easy to overlook. There are times when I'm sure he understands, but more often than not I try to avoid the situation all together because of the hysterical meltdown that ensues. We had to cancel speech this week for the developmental ped appointment, but I think I'm going to make up some social stories and maybe a schedule board as well. I want to shift the focus to transitions and expectations a bit more - we have to come up with a better method than the current, "'Bye! Go away!" that is too often said through tears for even the most seemingly mundane things. With school starting in the fall (or possibly this summer), I think I need to get some foundations laid so it doesn't become traumatic for both of us.

Just a quick update

We have a full week coming up. We're doing another session of OT at storytime tomorrow (really today as it's after 1am by my clock), and as per usual I am in no way prepared for it. The OT suggested we try walking a bit before we get to the library to see if that would help Michael settle down a bit faster. I'm pretty sure she was meaning that I park a bit further from the library than normal, except that normally Michael rides in the stroller while I walk the two miles from our house to the library. Then we came up with the idea that John would take the stroller with him to work and I would follow with Michael on the subway and we would walk over from there. I've been getting more and more nervous about this.

We had Michael "free" on the subway on Sunday for a trial run and to take pictures for a social story about staying in our seats on the train. I took him on Patco to Jersey by myself last weekend and he was fantastic. I'm not sure if it was because John was with us or because of his mood, but he had real problems staying put and at least two mini-meltdowns when we told him he couldn't change seats for the third and fourth time. Meltdowns I can deal with - my back would not be happy if I had to walk the seven blocks from the subway to the library carrying screaming toddler but I could do it, it's the bolting that sometimes comes with a meltdown that terrifies me. I'm planning on taking him up to a playground a few blocks away from the library, letting him blow off some energy there and then walking over. I'm hoping this will work well.

We had what was his last quarterly review for IE last week and I'm really going to miss these people. It took a little while, but we have a great group pf therapists and he's made so much progress in the past few months it's amazing. We talked with the 3-5 agency and he'll be going to the preschool that we want. It's a reverse-mainstream program that looks like it will provide enough structure but more importantly allow him the opportunity to interract with his NT peers. Thanks to Heather and Patti for your well wishes, I was in more than a bit of a mood last week and never took the time to respond to both of you.

Lastly, we got the call this morning that there's been a cancelation and we have his one-year follow-up with the developmental ped on Wednesday. I have no idea what this appointment will entail and I have a lot of mixed emotions about it. I know in my mind and heart that Michael is autistic, but I would be lying if I didn't sometimes wish someone would take the diagnosis away. He has his days where it's easy to forget that he has any problems and those days where I have that dark, consuming fear that he'll never be able to function in this world. Basically, I just have to not think about the appointment.

Time for bed. A big crafts update is coming soon and also....

Maryland Sheep and Wool!!!!!