Living & Loving, Autism & Deafness

8 years old – thoughts

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As Ryan (here eating fries when we briefly stopped at the park a few weeks ago) was climbing on my lap today, I started thinking about how soon that may be getting harder for him to do.  He is a tall boy, still skinny, and can still fit upon my lap even though it’s a little poky in places :D.  I have to remember to appreciate that and cherish a little boy on my lap, as the years go so fast.

I remember when Chris (above, left) crawled into our laps and in our bed every night to sleep.  He loved to be held and would just laugh and laugh.  He loved to lay down with his dad and play tickle games and play with his toys. 

Colleen wasn’t so much a lap person but she loved to sit with us, especially her dad, and play her animal games.  She did that a lot at age eight, and had a game called the cows that she played with her dad about imaginary animals and their conversations.

Now Ryan is over eight years old, and where is the time going?  It just seems the childhood ages are going past me – Chris going to be 20, Colleen’s 16th birthday is in 11 days, and they’re growing up before my eyes.

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old favorites —

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I started crocheting again a few weeks ago — I’m making a table scarf for my computer table and plan to make another for the other table. I used to knit and crochet a lot when I was a young teen up until maybe 15 years ago. It’s really soothing to do it again.

Planned to watch the new episode of 90210 on the computer, but ended up watching

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My So Called Life instead (the final episode) instead, on Hulu, as last night’s 90210 is not on yet. I really loved My So Called Life, and can’t put into words how I sometimes can identify with Clare Danes’ character in that show – – -as well as Brian.

So, back to work tomorrow after busy day today running around town trying to reestablish Chris’s items such as bank accounts, SSI, etc. It’s amazing how long all that takes and how tiring it is. Now I have another large packet of papers again as his SSI recert for his medical need is due.

Still waiting for test results on Colleen – – posted on Facebook but not here that she’s been tested for anemia and mono for how tired and exhausted and weak she’s been on and off lately. Hopefully we’ll find out by tomorrow —

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Graciously accepting help

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I was just thinking this morning that this is one of the lessons I’ve had to learn. I’ve been thinking about, what are the things I’ve had to learn in this walk we’ve been on in life? Graciously accepting help, though I’ve not yet gotten very good as ASKING for help; accepting my limitations; and not being a perfectionist. There’s probably more, but that’s a start.

Years ago I made this web site: http://criscollrj.com/cleaning.html . Beth D. if you’re reading, I’m sure you remember helping me with this way back on Geocities in ’97!!! All the tables and everything for HTML coding. But I felt so guilty that I could not follow it. And I did not want to ask for help.
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Colleen back to school—




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Originally uploaded by criscollrj.

Colleen went back to school yesterday but only made it half the day. She saw four of her friends, though, including the girl in the middle. Girl on right is still at the middle school. They’re not in any of her classes. She got to three classes and then came home sick. We have all had a bad cold. Today she’s going to go in for the other half of the day – so I’ll find out when 4th period starts and drop her off for that.

We’re having Chris’s meeting today for attendance. The only thing that made me nervous is they said they had to discuss his need for a one on one with the director and that it would be director’s call to approve it. I hate him to have another change. I hope they give him an opportunity to stay and get used to everything.

I had yesterday off which was nice – had meetings and cleaned the office. But I wish I had today off too. I am going to take time now (was up early for Colleen’s bus) to set up this third computer we got from Rog’s aunt and clean just a little more, then start typing at 8 when Ryan is gone….

Hey, if anyone still actually reads this can you just comment and let me know? I need to possibly republicize this on technorati, etc. as I don’t know if it’s even on the blog links anymore or what’s going on. I know my business blog seems pretty dead too – just haven’t had time to update anything.

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Changes

Reminds me of this song, even though mine has nothing to do with a heartbreak – well not the same kind.

My boy is moving!!  Chris is moving to a group home on SATURDAY.  It is an awesome place.  I think he’s really going to be happy there.  It is so close to his school, and they’ll be taking him on a field trip every other day or so after school. 

And I’m looking for a job.  We are stopping home-schooling Colleen – we got her through end of eighth grade with it, but now she’s got to make a clean break and try again with 9th grade in public school.  I’m trying to get a legal secretary job.  I’m still transcribing, and I love it, but it’s just not steady enough.  WE are SO behind on our bills, and want to get out of debt.  I’ve signed with a temp agency and will wait for the right job to come about.  I’m not going to just grab anything as I do have a nice little income from my transcribing where I can be a little picky. 

Then when I get a full-time job (hopefully soon!) I can catch up on the credit cards again.

It’s just funny, what a full circle since I started my blog here at LJ in 2003.  I was still working full time and lost my job a little later after that.  Was then just home, then went back to typing at home, then home again, then typing at home again, and now looking for work again.  5 1/2 years later.

Back then the kids were 1, 8, and 12.  Unbelievable.

Funny how we called them Owen, Renee & RJ.  Eventually I just started using their real names. 

I didn’t realize how hard it was to find archives with this theme background.  I finally had to go in my WordPress blog to get it as a lot o the entries are copied there.  But I may have to get a different background as God help anyone who wanted to go to the beginning of my Livejournal – there’s just no link to do it!!

5 1/2 years ago:

April of 03: 

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Uncategorized, health, sleep, workNo Comments »

owen is having a bit of a tough time again after doing very well for a week or so. He went to day care with his sister first time last week on Thurs and Fri. This is the first EVER he’s been in day care. he did well! This week he goes back to school (tomorrow) but last night he started staying up late again — 4:30 a.m. this morning (dh stayed up with him – I actually got to sleep 9 hours last night PRAISE God! it is 12:00 now and he’s still up. dh has to get up at 4:30 a.m. and I will be up at 6:30 with my little baby, I’m sure.

I had been thinking all weekend trying to make a decision about my work. I work 22 hours a week now but have the opportunity to work up to 30 if I wish. That would mean having the older kids go to the day care every day after school. After thinking about it all weekend we decided to wait until summer and see how they do, and maybe work a little later then if they seem to be able to handle it.

We just have been so broke for so long that it feels good to be able to pay the bills and having more sounds so good. We also need a new house — 5 kids in this tiny house is tough.

dori, in the close family :)


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Almost time for my fall background change!


Ryan, my photographer.

Wow, it’s been a really long time since I updated. I’m not even sure what I wrote about exactly last (and don’t really feel like looking right now)

First, after taking tons of pics like this with my camera phone, Which he really wasn’t supposed to to do but got away with it as much as possible anyway , Ryan lost the battery to my camera phone. This explains why I’ve had no August pictures.

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Kiddo-update

CHRIS:

Chris has slept like 4/5 nights now and we’re so pleased! Dad took him to Home Depo the other day and he had a lot of fun with that, and he also took two walks around our neighborhood. He seems to be doing better after his med adjustment (Abilify went from 10mg to 15mg.)

But we are still pursuing applying for the National Deaf Academy for him. I will be doing that soon.

He is also going to be starting vocational training at a local school for half the day – I think he’ll like that a lot!! It will make his day more interesting – he’ll go to his regular school half day and the other half a day. He may start this year, yet.

His weight was going up but now seems to be stabilized at 200 pounds. I hope he doesn’t gain any more.

COLLEEN:

I filled out app. papers for www.ecotohio.org homeschooling today and plan to fedex to Columbus tonight. I’m pulling Colleen out of school.

The particular homeschool is a public school, not a traditional home school. I could not do a regular home school where it was all up to me. Even this is going to be hard for me, but I trust it will save Colleen. I hope. She’s currently failing 4 classes. She missed 40 days of school this year from illness. If she’s going to continue to be ill often, and continue to be as anxious and sickly (often caused by nerves, I believe) as she is now, I think she’ll thrive in this.

I hope.

“ECOT educates over six thousand students between the ages of five and twenty-one from every county in the state of Ohio.

Running an online school requires as many resources as a traditional public school. In addition to our teachers, a staff of counselors, school administrators, customer service specialists, computer programmers, database managers, school-funding experts, shipping handlers and consultants enable ECOT to work.

ECOT is a public school that relies solely on a fixed per-student state tax allocation, without the addition of property taxes, private funds or donations from special interests. ECOT, as a public school, charges no tuition.

ECOT provides a valuable service for all Ohio students and families seeking an alternative to traditional public education.”

“What sets ECOT apart from other public schools is its home-based online learning environment. ECOT’s ability to provide a statewide K-12 educational environment through its own secure Web-based network, or intranet, is unique. The intranet restricts access to non ECOT-approved Web sites while providing a wide range of teaching tools and educational sites that are appropriate for students of all ages.

Just like other public school students, ECOT students have teachers, counselors, class discussions, report cards and out-of-class trips. Unlike other public school students, however, ECOT students are required to use computer and Internet technology to access their lessons, may never meet their classmates face to face, and are not subject to a dress code!

ECOT parents do not need to educate their children alone: ECOT’s teachers provide quality instruction online and actively engage each student to offer assistance and guidance. Parents have the freedom to directly support their children’s education, while letting ECOT teachers do what they do best: teach.”

RYAN:

His IEP is today, in 2 1/2 hours. I think he’s done pretty well this year. I expect he’ll be at the same school next year for first grade. Can’t believe he’s almost done with kindergarten. He’s writing 3-letter words and is talking much better!

Both boys are getting new hearing aides soon.

That reminds me, Ryan’s lost the battery case off his hearing aide. I need to take it in to Jane to get it fixed…
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A very strange birthday —

Still fighting continuously sick kids.

Here’s yesterday, and a schedule of my madness….(from my transcription board)

This was my day yesterday — (below)

Today I’m just going to try and catch up a little, do some dishes and laundry and pick up, and do a schedule so I can get all my work done (I’ll attach that too!)

I hope you guys have a super day today!

« on: Today at 07:29:42 AM »

You guys probably saw my worklist and event list on Thursday when I typed it out.  I have not had one that long before.  Grateful for it – boy, do we need the money – but I need to buckle down and focus on everything.

Then yesterday was a horrible day – well, I guess not HORRIBLE, but very trying.

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Summer will be winding down…

Colleen graduated last Sunday from her boating class, which was very cool. It was a very beautiful day, which was a blessing as we were at the beach for about 4 hours, before we had to leave and go to her camp that she was at all week. During the boating class, which lasted all summer 2x a week, she learned to canoe, kayak, jet-ski, sail, and probably other things that I can’t think of at this moment. I am really glad she had the opportunity with our park system to do this, and I highly recommend if your state has a boating program for teens that you have them join in!

She wasn’t able to join in the boat ride here but spent a lot of time swimming and had a good time. Afterward we had a wonderful dinner that was SO filling, croissant sandwiches, chips, mac & potato salads, fruit salad, pop. Yum!

After dinner certificates and packages and a new life jacket to keep was presented to each student. We could not wait until the end of that because we had to pack up and get Colleen to her 4-H camp. She got her package just in time for us to receive it and had to the car!

A hectic time was had then as we rushed home for Colleen to shower the sand off, pack any remaining items and we went and dropped her off for a fun-filled week at her 4-H camp. Unfortunately the perfect weather did not last through the week, and she had 2-3 days of a lot of rain. Made good use, I’m sure of the extra shoes and outfits packed! She made a lot of friends, saw old, close friends, and had fun singing the Numa song with her camp-mates in their talent show.

She found new friends that liked her comic character Inuyasha as much as she does.

We spent the week just caring for the two rambunctious boys, and know Chris will be eager to go back to school Monday at his day camp that will last three weeks. Ryan just has about 2 weeks left of his day camp. Then, amazingly, it will be only about 3 weeks until regular school starts.

This is similar to the classroom Ryan has this summer, and also to the one he will have in the fall. He loves his summer camp! They attend field trips once a week. It’s a quick 2 hours (I arrive home at 9:30 after dropping him off, and leave about 11:40 to pick him up) but he’s just really enjoying it.

And Chris LOVES his camp – they go in water EVERY day and are well equipped for getting Chris out when they need to.

So, we’re enjoying our summer, and planning for fall. Come fall I plan to work about 15-20 hours, probably 3 days a week. I’m going to try and plan some larger housecleaning projects the 2 days I’m off. I need to do MANY things, organize cabinets, deep-clean bedrooms, clean basement, organize some painting projects, and even just trying to adhere to some sort of exercise plan.

Happy rest of summer everyone, and hope all are peaceful and healthy!

As always, plenty more pictures in Flickr – these are just a small sample.

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