September 11, 2012


     This morning is Grey's first day at a regular preschool.  We haven't prepped or even told his teacher about his hearing loss, we haven't even met her.  It is only a two and a half hour, two day a week program, the idea being, let's see how he does in a less than perfect school situation in prep for kinder next year, which will be far from ideal. Ideal being what he had last year, which was 3 kids in his class, all of whom wore hearing aids, a school that was set up with things like acoustics in mind, and a teacher who was a certified  auditory-verbal educator.  When I asked Grey what he was going to do at school today if his hearing aid stopped working, he replied, "I'll give it to my teacher and she can check the battery and listen to it with her cool listening thingy." Sadly, not gonna happen.  Our plan of attack is going to be 1) Make sure the batteries aren't going to die in the 2.5h span he is there 2) Educate the teacher on not getting the aids wet and sitting Grey close to her so he might have a snowball's chance in hell of figuring out what is going on.  Sigh.  I feel sick to my stomach, having just dropped him off.  He was nervous at the house this morning, saying that he was gonna throw up and that his eyes were all watery, but when we got to the classroom, he was interested in all the toys, went right in and started playing.  The teacher asked him how to spell his name, he told her, and that was about it. I think it is the stark difference between the emphasis on being HOH last year to the nothing of this year that has me spooked.  I am wondering things like, will my sweet tempered, well behaved boy become a behavior problem because he is giving up trying to understand what people are saying? Will other kids pull his aids out and then no one will be able to get them back in? Will the teacher shy away from him because he is more work to deal with than the other kids?  I see that in nursing, sadly, all the time.  The patients who are sicker with more involved care, or who are in isolation, get less care than the healthier ones because it is extra work for the nurse to get in there with all the isolation gear on and do all the extra stuff involved.  It's sad, but true sometimes.  Will it be my smart boy who begins to fall behind because it is more work to teach him than the other kids?  I think I am going to have an ulcer by the end of the day, and it is only day one of preK. How will I survive 13 more years of educational wories?
     Anyway, all worries aside (if that is possible) it was kind of a funny morning.  Cali remembered she was supposed to bring in a leaf collection for science while I was trying to wrangle her hair into two high ponytails, which I couldn't get high enough for her taste so she was mad. So I sent her outside while trying to get Grey moving.  Unfortunately, he wouldn't stay in bed last night (he needed two drinks of water, to pee three drops, to check on Cali, and get a glow stick before he could fall asleep) and so was tired and lying on the sofa in his Lego star wars underwear with his blanket over his head to block out the sunlight.  He refused to get up or eat breakfast.  Meanwhile, Cali comes back in sans leaves, saying it is too cold to go outside (it is 75 degrees, what a Texan!) and she must have a jacket. Grey starts yelling to close the door because she is letting in the cold air and he can't sleep in the cold. I point out (loudly, since he wouldn't put his hearing aids on) that he should not be sleeping anyway, he should get up and get dressed for school. Cali won't wear the jacket I find and insists on her cool new jean jacket that we can't find.  Then we had to battle over Grey's outfit since he refuses to wear anything besides elastic waistband sport shorts and batman t-shirts.  I wanted him to look somewhat nice on his first day, to make a good impression, to show we weren't a family of rednecks, who had a kid with a birth defect due to too much hard liquor while pregnant.  (Do other mom's have thoughts like this, or am I the only twisted one?) When  he was finally dressed, washed, and ready, he looked at us and asked, "Why don't you guys have to look good?" Geez.
    Here he is with a real smile at home, and at school feeling slightly less sure of himself with a fake, nervous smile.  I can't wait to go pick him up!


August 27, 2012

4th grade!

What we were all doing on the first morning of 4th grade.

August 23, 2012

Gearing up for shcool

The new clothes are bought, the supplies are ready, we have a new haircut, and are trying to get into bed by 9 (not an easy task).  We had our last yee-haw of the summer when Granny came to visit and spoiled the kids while James and I went on a date, and spoiled us by making our favorite dinner!  Then she spoiled us because it was her birthday and we all got to eat as much ice cream as we could hold.  James finished painting stars on the wall at the school's cyber cafe just in the nick of time for school to start.  Top pic is in progress, bottom is finished product.  Middle pic is ice cream smorgasbord.  We went to back to school boot camp tonight and met Cali's teachers.  This year she will split her day between the science and math expert and the language arts/reading expert.  We love both teachers and are super excited for 4th grade! First day is Monday and we can hardly wait, though the wake up time is going to be a big shock to Cali's system and she will probably be a cranky pill.  She has taken to wearing a bungee cord around her waist as a belt for the last few days, and is currently planning on wearing it to school on Monday, so that will be an added wrinkle to the morning rush.  :)

August 12, 2012

San Antonio

We had a fine trip to San Antonio and have replenished our blood with Texas pride from the Alamo. Our hotel was right on the river walk, so we parked our truck and had a pedestrian vacation.  It was fun, and kind of reminded us of being in Europe.  We spent countless hours at the rooftop pool and hot tub, visited the Alamo, went to the children's museum, Mexican marketplace, and for a boat ride up and down the river.  We went to Mi Tierra for dinner and the kids were hypnotized by the huge case of pastries and goodies.  James and I were amazed at the size of the drinks. :)  Cali scored some Mexican jumping beans and Grey discovered Chinese yo-yo's, we had cinnamon rolls the size of Grey's head for breakfast, and Grey was introduced to Davey Crockett for the first time.  All in all it was smash success of a family trip!
The air conditioned Alamo and the real Alamo
Driving a bulldozer at the children's museum
Davey! Davey Crockett! King of the wild frontier...
River view from our hotel room
Boys in the hot tub
Cali in the pool.  We pretty much had the place to ourselves because we vacationed Monday to Wednesday.

Drooling over pastries
All the fun pinatas in the entryway
Beer so big I had to use two hands!

August 01, 2012

Love summer!

Ahhhhh, summer.  It's like one big, long vacation.  I work 2 to 3 days per week, and the rest of the time we sort of do whatever strikes our fancy, or whatever groupon I have in my pocket says we should do.  Since we got home from our trip we have been lazily sitting back, playing with friends, hosting visitors, sleeping in, and (lately) increasing our screen hours by watching the Olympics.  All except Cali, who has been going to hours of basketball and swimming daily.  It makes me feel so lazy to sit in the bleachers and watch her try to run backwards while dribbling two basketballs at the same time.  I can't even find the time (motivation?) to do 30 minutes of yoga.  She falls asleep in about two minutes these days.  I can't believe how fast the time is flying by!  This is the last week of basketball, then next week we head to San Antonio, the week after that Marie is coming to stay and James and I are going to celebrate our anniversary (again!) while we have an in-house babysitter (Yippee!), then, if you can believe it, school starts and the vacation ends.  And I can get all excited about sharpened pencils and crisp notebook paper.  Life is so good.

July 16, 2012

July 4th

 Much fun was had on our traditional 4th of July at the splash park.  It was a gorgeous day, the cooler was well stocked, and we were all cool, lazy, and happy.  We remembered to bring hearing protection for Grey this year, so he was able to watch the fireworks without crying or startling at the loud booms, and he was amazed by the finale, talking about the sky exploding.  The kids got coupons for free slurpees from the park cops, and I enjoyed many hours of lazing around on a blanket in the shade while my kids were occupied.  Yee-Haw!

Summer so far

We vacationed June away!  A month in a few short pics...
 3 Musketeers
 New bunk beds, and goodbye toddler bed.  The kids think they are at summer camp sleeping in the same room together.
 Birthday girls!
Birthday party
 Dad making birthday cake
 Greg and Jennie on a date at a fancy restaurant
 Seeing the dolphins in Vegas
 At the farm in California
 Picking (eating) strawberries
And, when we finally came home, we discovered the volunteer cantaloupe had invaded the rosebush and is growing a fruit hanging in the air.