Monday, March 31, 2008

She inspires me

Two birthday presents. One given to her, one bought with a ToysRUs gift card. Two sides of her personality. Two strong interests at opposite ends of the spectrum. Both fully take over her imagination as she explores.

And yes, she is wearing her stunning winter hat and coat with a Home Depot apron. It's perfect for collecting little bits of metal and "treasures". A girl can't be a fashion plate all the time, you know.

(By the way, the metal detector was her purchase, along with a couple of stuffed kittens, she couldn't wait to get it home!)

Friday, March 28, 2008

Stuff Portrait Friday

I am doing a lot of looking around the vast Internetland, finding photography challenges and techniques to play with. Like the photo of my favorite mug from a while back (and yes, I've done other challenges for that group, just not posting them all), this one captures a little piece of my life that I love. Not sure why this one is a favorite, other than it catches my eye every time I go into the basement. The overhead, 50-year-old light bulb gives it a nice glow and the conglomeration of stuff is just right, somehow. A mix of past and present and yet another example of the similarities between my husband and (late) favorite grandpa. Jason keeps that basement workshop and my memories of Grandpa alive. But it is cold down there, brrrrr!!!

Inspired by Random & Odd's Stuff Portrait Friday: Numbers theme
and Shutter Sisters: A Story of life

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Well, of course!

Because it's Spring Break this week.
Because Jason is busy with National Guard this week.
Because Emma has a thousand grandiose ideas as to what vacation entails.

George and I are sick. Just head colds, not the horrible flu that's going around, but still. It's bad enough to cause him and I to be awake for goodly portions of the night (me struggling to breathe, him coughing up a lung or two), and then be completely unable to focus or speak pleasantly to those around us during the day. And the Kleenex, oh the Kleenex. Good thing trash day is tomorrow, ours is FULL! Ah, the fun.

Luckily, mine didn't hit until Easter, so we were able to dye eggs the day before without too much trouble. Emma was an expert this year and got to make the deciding votes as to when each egg should be removed from the dye. Blues were beautiful, as were the greens. Purple and red were both pink. Yellow was pretty. And orange... didn't really work at all. We did one orange egg, left it in the dye the entire time other eggs were being rotated through and still, barely flesh tone. Hmmm, I'm sure there's a future science experiment in there some where.

This was George's first time participating in the process. For the most part, he did really well. He was very gentle with the eggs, good at taking turns with Emma, and stayed at the table almost the whole time. But waiting is hard. Tears were shed and the sign language movement for "waiting" was used repeatedly. Poor kid with a mean mommy who takes pictures of her sad boy crying.
And today? It's pouring rain so the kids are playing inside while I continue to fill up the trash and Lysol everything I touch. We've continued to have adventures on the dining table Island of Sodor (no, I haven't taken it down, we just temporarily remove portions at meal times). I hooked our old video camera up to the TV so they could watch themselves act and dance (thank you Albertson's pharmacy security camera for that idea!). And they've been playing music and running around in the basement.

Is that a dress George is wearing in that picture? Why yes, yes it is. Isn't it great that he has an older sister to emulate?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Goofy Boy

As we head into Spring Break next week, George has to deal with the challenge of an uneven schedule. His morning preschool (the special needs school) takes an extra week at all breaks because they meet for an extra month in the summer. So, he's home in the mornings this week and then has to transition into school mode for the afternoons. His afternoon teachers have been struggling with his behavior, as have I at home. He's very obviously stressed by the change in routine.

I'm trying to fill his mornings without too many videos and keep him active. Today, I decided to capitalize on his resurgence in love for all things Thomas. (As was expected, after a birthday last summer that was filled with Thomas trains, he promptly wanted nothing to do with them for several months. We boxed them up and put them out of sight, waiting for him to let us know when he wanted them again.) He's been watching the videos again this week, so today I found the (big) box of trains and tracks and let the Island of Sodor take over our dining room table.

He's been playing with them for two solid hours now. Peaceful music plays in the background as he keeps up a running commentary on the trains' adventures. I've gotten some chores done and the TV has remained off. We leave for school soon, let's hope that a morning filled with imaginary play helps him make a better transition today. If not, oh well, he can come home and play some more this afternoon!

And just for the sake of cuteness, yet another new page:
Journaling:You thought you were so cute in this adult sized “Thing 2” shirt, (and you were), that I couldn’t get you to stop admiring yourself in the hall mirror and the flip screen of the camera. Which would be fine. If you would just stop moving once in a while! No matter. The pictures may be blurry, but your silly cuteness shines through! - March ‘08

Monday, March 17, 2008


Contrary to what you may assume when looking at the following pictures, we have not decorated our Easter eggs yet. This page was made using pictures from last year that I had never done anything with. I figured I'd better use them before I take identical new ones next weekend.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

5 of 196

Pictures, that is. One hundred and ninety six digital photos. Wow.
Those of you that read the DSP newsletter: watch for this layout in April's issue, along with an article on how to pare down huge amounts of event photos into a managable number perfect for your scrapbook pages!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A is for Assessment, B is for Birthday...

C is for holy Crud, life just never slows down!!

Lots of pictures coming from last weekend, just need to weed through them and do some Photoshopping. Miss Emma turned 7 and had two fabulous parties (one for classmates, one for family). Both went well and we all collapsed in exhaustion at the end of the day. Here she is enjoying her favorite present. Loaded with great Rock and Roll from the 70's, 80's, 90's, and Today, just like every radio station out there! No kids' music or *gag* Hannah Montana for our little diva!

Also, this is the time of year when the assessment teams for our local school district start observing Special Needs preschool kids, to decide placement options for Kindergarten. In some ways, this is easy for us. Our neighborhood school hosts the local Autism classroom, and we know that, if they deem him ready, George will go to the head of the list there. (There is limited space, so just having Autism doesn't guarantee a spot.) We also are very comfortable with the idea of holding him back a year. He has a late summer birthday, so that would have been a consideration anyway.

However, having to fill out forms like this one makes me break out in hives.

The questions are so ridiculous. How can I answer them "yes" or "no"??? #4: Eats specific foods and refuses to eat what most people will usually eat. Well yes, he's very picky, which is typical of Autistic children. He's also four. #35: Is unaffectionate; doesn't give affectionate responses (e.g., hugs and kisses). No, we're lucky in that he's very affectionate. With us. Classmates or strangers, not so much. Again, he's four. #54: Did the child appear to be deaf to some sounds but hear others? I'm sorry, maybe these people have never met any children??? That's what they do.

Okay, rant over. Pictures will be posted soon!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008