Friday, August 31, 2007

No need to hurry

A few weekends ago I went to a Pool Party with 20 dogs that had graduated from the Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) program or were CCI breeders. They ran around and swam but otherwise there was little incident. Apparently this is highly unusual.

I started looking at photos of CCI dogs again. I do this both as a way to distract myself and also because I'm aware of the countdown until the next Team Training in November. I try to remember the power of taking my time. I realize that for a long time my cat Mori had this role for me in my life. He would sit in my lap and purr and I would sit there and pet him -- slow down. Then my children wanted to be held a lot which I alternately liked and found literally hurtful to my wrists. Little T wants to be held a lot but never for long. Special K sometimes wants a brief hug and has her nightly cuddle but it's also short. I no longer have the 1/2 half "enforced" sit-down of breastfeeding or just holding a nonambulatory child. I think I need it.

Yesterday I sat down in the park with the kids. For the first time since Little T started going to the park I wasn't really in super vigilance mode most of the time. I relaxed because suddenly Little T can play in the 2-5 year old area of the park by himself.

I also note with some irony that the command to tell CCI dogs to relieve themselves is "Hurry" Clearly hurrying is not something a CCI person is expected to do otherwise.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Little T performs wonders again

I took Little T to his language evaluation and the SLP there pronounced him typical. He still has his problems but apparently he will just get over them with a little help from me and preschool.

I had been coming to the same conclusion myself beginning right after I scheduled this eval. Little T suddenly decided to catch up a whole bunch on language especially in the last month after months of literally halting progress. I decided to keep the eval in case the problems turned out to be therapy worthy since my comparison point is Special K who started talking very early and very often. However my children ever delight in making me look silly.

I still remember my pediatrician asking me at one of Special K's first appointments. "Can she point?" "No" I replied since up until that time she never had. "Where's Elmo?" the ped asked and lo and behold Special K pointed to Elmo like she had been pointing her entire life. My jaw dropped. The pediatrician smiled and checked "Can Point" on her chart.

It's still sinking in to be honest. Right now he's quiet because he's watching tv. Yeah bad mom. TV clearly retards speech. But his speech/language is like his fine motor in his right arm. For a long time he had a depressing litany of delayed delayed in his tests "he needs therapy now(Mom run around and get him some)" and then suddenly he was typical typical typical "Don't worry mom". If his fine motor of his right arm is anything to go by he'll be singing complete songs soon enough. He loves songs and I have to say he can already carry a tune better than his sister. With the right help the healing and resilience of children is truly miraculous.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Fridges and writing

I went so far as to call Samsung and talked to second tier support aka technical support. After several minutes of back and forth the guy told me with some surprise like "The models today have curved handles." Oh!! I look at Lowes and there is the fridge perhaps of my dreams in all its shiny beauty.

I also realized I've gotten into the bad habit again of telling myself I'm not a writer because I don't write. I do write every single darn day. Most of it is stuff directly for Little T. Letters and plans. Some of it is blogging. Today's writing besides blogging was to write a letter for myself telling Paratransit why it's unrealistic to expect a person with a movement disorder to put in car seats. Then maybe I can actually go places with the kids by myself that is not walking distance of my house. What a concept. At some point I will get through the mound of paperwork needed to get the help Little T and I need to just live our lives. But instead I spent my time on the phone about shiny fridges so someday I can open my fridge door without pain.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Little T pulling a wagon

Little T has one strong right arm/hand

Has Harry Potter lost its appeal or I have gotten too serious?

Special K has a high tolerance for fantasy violence and death. She used to play World of Warcraft and now she plays Guild Wars with her dad because the online community aspect is limited only to certain areas. She has a low tolerance for real violence and death. She draws a sharp distinction between the two. Whoever said that kids don't understand the difference has not met my child. Classic fairytales are also full of violence and death. Some children are frightened by them and others are not.

I guess how far we'll let her read will depend on how "real" she thinks Harry Potter and his crew are. I'll ask her after the first book. So far she says she "doesn't get" Harry Potter so I guess Harry Potter is still a little above her.

Meanwhile I found it hard to get into reading the seventh book. I skipped to the end and read the last few pages. Very bad I know. For a few days it sat there in all its largeness. I know Harry Potter has big problems but I feel like I have several Voldemorts to deal with and I'm on quest to destroy them before they destroy my son's chance at a good life. Okay overly dramatic but isn't that what the series is all about?

Now I've started reading it and I find it interesting but it doesn't have the same 'must it read' it feel the I had for the other books. Has Harry Potter lost its appeal or am I have gotten too serious? Or is this book just a bit too grim? What appeals to you about Harry Potter? Do you think the last book was as good as the rest? Which is your favorite Harry Potter book? Why do you read seven books of such huge length?

Crossposted to Silicon Valley Moms Blog on 8/17

Saturday, August 18, 2007

More shiny - in fridge form

What our current  fridge  handles look likeWe need a new fridge. Our current one hurts my wrists each and every time I open it because it is broken and because the shape of the handles causes my hands to cramp painfully as I grip them. Our current fridge is white not stainless steel. However it's easier to see the handles in this color

A repair person fixed it so it's less broken but still painful and says the handles can't be replaced. It's been this way since we moved in almost six years ago but a new fridge that would actually work for me has 4 doors which is more than I want to pay a fridge. Yes I'm cheap frugal.

Shiny fridgeHere's the shiny fridge I want to buy. C is currently testing to see if its slightly larger depth will interfere with kitchen traffic. He's pulled our current fridge out by 3 inches. So far I've noticed no difference. C notices slightly but then he moved the fridge.

4 doors good. AFAIK this is the only fridge with 4 doors. There are french door fridges but these have doors on the bottom that I find hard to pull out. The handles are still not quite what I would like as I'd prefer more curved handles but I think the greatly decreased weight of the four doors (plus actually having a fridge that's properly weighted) will
help a lot.

I'd really prefer more curved handles like these. They seem easier to grip. But that's not an option with the quattro fridge. More curved handles

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Borrowed happiness with money

Rob Brezsny wrote once "Money can't buy you happiness but it can let you borrow it for a while while you figure out to get it for free."

Yesterday we bought me a shiny new laptop. See how it shines. Sturdy magnesium chassis a label stuck next to the touchpad reads. No shiny. Sturdy too.

I used to use my husband C's laptop but its power supply keeps dying and usually it's dead just when I have an hour to write. I must confess that 80% of my writing has been writing stuff for Little T and I mean letters to bureaucrats and doctors on his behalf. The other 20% is blogging. The only way I seem able to write these days is to leave the house entirely away from the numerous Little T letters that keep wanting to be written.

Once away other things ask to be written but I have no laptop. I need to rewrite my picture book. And I have a novel but I have not actually worked on enough to know what is yet. Just who the characters are.

My nonfiction book sits there waiting impatiently to be finished but I tell it that I just can't. We're back in hospital hell. And the book revisits hospital hell in graphic detail. "More fuel for me" the book says in the candid tone it is written. "I think I have enough material and I need a bit more distance." But it will get finished. I just need. Well I'd like to just get the hell out of the hospital.

Tomorrow we will literally spend all day in the hospital with our son who has been deliberately kept awake. Tests will be run. It will probably be hellish. The only bright spot in this otherwise dismal day will be the arrival of our WII. Oh and we bought WII play yesterday and we'll buy another WII game. Ye gods I had no idea these video games systems were so expensive.

Little T turns three next month. For the first time ever we have bought one of those party packages at a party place. Money buys me time and the party we had at the place for bigger kids made Little T happy. It's also a celebration that Little T can actually go to such places.

I also bought a package for Special K for April. She wanted one this year but by the time Little T was clear to attend such places the place was fully booked.

We also test drove a Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. So clear who wins. It's our bid to trade money for the ability for me to drive again. We'll see if it works.

So I'm doing my part to keep the US economy afloat.

And I hope it lets me borrow some happiness for a while. But I would trade it all for better health for Little T. Unfortunately that I can't seem to buy.