Monday, March 30, 2009

The Good Girl

Ki is always the good girl.
For years already she has: attended my appointments and sat quietly playing, created whispering families from condiments on restaurant tables, always raised her hand, and been a teachers dream.

Recently there have been a couple episodes of lying (see haircut stories). Tonight I tucked her in and while I was fluffing her pillow I realized there was something in the pillow case. The hidden goods turned out to be a new unopened container of Hubba Bubba Bubblegum Tape.

She told me she found it and wasn't sure what it was from. I asked her if she stole it. She denied it. "I would tell you if I stole it." I reminded her that if you steal that the police get called because it is against the law. Her eyes looked wide. But actually, not all that wide.

-housekeepers came this morning and changed the sheets
-they probably would not have put such a treasure back in a pillow case
-contraband most likely hidden after housekeepers here
-Ki at school today
-Aj not at school-home sick
-In the afternoon kids and I went to the store
-Aj is not capable of setting his sister up like this

-I think Pops and I are in trouble in the future.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Ki's Lego Party

Sometimes I pride myself on operating my life in such a way that I give others the opportunity to feel good about themselves.
My dirty, messy house-it allows others to feel good about their own house.
Having my daughters birthday party in March when her birthday is in January-others feel good that a party a few weeks after their child's birth date is not so late.

So we finally had Ki's birthday party. My friend recommended the Lego Store at the nearby mall. So kids, mostly boys on the invite list of course, came over after school on Friday. I put everything in the front yard and there was a whirlwind of balls, dogs and kids. Then cake-which Ki and I designed and she decorated (pic later)- and ice cream. Then Bea, myself and Pops each drove a kid-filled car to the mall. Each child got to pick a small Lego kit to build and at the end were given a box to fill from the Lego Wall. Lego store was a big hit-great fun had by all. NOTE: If you chose this party-do it on a week day as they set up a table for the party right in the store. On a weekend day it would be too crowded and confusing all the customers.
Ki was a happy girl.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Weekday Mornings

Weekday mornings consist of me usually getting up later then is necessary and barking at the kids to get dressed. Aj is typically wildly distracted in the am and I get to repeat myself adnosium (sp?) about him putting clothing items on his body.
Then it is out to the car ans the 3 block drive to school. Java goes every morning. It is her routine. Even if I don't plan to return home to stay, I have to go back to drop off the dog.
Usually I am home for a bit and indulge in my peaceful morning moments. For example, right now.
I am comfortably sunk into the middle of the couch. On my right is Bear the cat and on my left is Java. My mug of hazelnut coffee is wedged between my thigh and Java. Sierra sleeps in the club chair. Granny looks for a place to sit and ends up at the dining room table.
I sip coffee, read Dear Abby, check email and pet my babies. A nice start to my day.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Lean closer so I can bite your whole head off

Sunday and Monday was one of those times when I felt overcome with sadness. All I could think about was everything sad and disappointing. My soul ached. I retreated to sleep for hours and most of a day.
I am still a bit touchy and was irritable at a meeting last night when forced to answer or entertain queries I found annoying. And I was easily annoyed. But at the same time I also wonder why we as women often feel the need to communicate with kid gloves.

No extra woof woof here

I heard back from Canine Companionss. No go. They only place facility dogs in large facilites, not small practices like mine. She did give me 2 other organizations that might work for me. We'll see.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Ki's Joke

Today I took Ki and her friend to basketball practice at Satan's Gym.
(The local community center run by a very right wing church. They also have Satan's pool as named by my friend Squid).

Ki and her friend have been enjoying exchanging jokes, frequently they are made-up jokes.
100 yards from gym drop off Ki told this joke:

What do you get when you cross an "F" and a duck?
A fuck.
Get it?!

She had NO idea what she was saying. I quickly changed the subject-hoping to decrease the odds she would enter the gym and retell the joke.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Fight or Flight

If it is injury or illness, I get a "fight" response. Suddenly, my mind is sharp and I triage needs, review options and plan ahead. An unflappable, yet flexible, calm over takes me. Today's event reminded me of how I respond to certain situations.

I was the car behind the car accident today. The light turned green and the car in front of me went. I glanced up and saw that car get plowed into by another that had obviously run a red light. The driver at fault got out of his car, looked at the other car briefly (maybe spoke to the other driver) and then moved his car out of the intersection. Other drivers drove around and continued on their way. I watched the other driver and could see s/he was trying to start their engine, but nothing seemed to be happening. Then the driver, a woman, climbed out of the car and walked to the sidewalk. She walked in an odd bent-over fashion. Something was odd here. So I got out of my car. When I got to her I asked her if she was hurt and she said she thought her arm was broken. She was trying to dial 911 on her cell phone with one hand. She didn't want to sit-so I called 911 on my phone and soon all the emergency folk were there. I waited and talked to the police officer and shared my version of the accident.

Two Mom's from the school went by and saw me on the corner and stopped to check on me and make sure I wasn't involved. Good karma going forward.
When I left the woman continued to be calm and was seated on the bumper of the firetruck while the EMT's stabilized her arm. It felt a bit strange to just walk off and get in my car and leave.

So if you've got illness or emergency or hospital, I'm your gal.
If you need help with anything related to a computer or financial planning, get a mop and open the door. That way you can clean the floor where I threw up and I won't knock the door down when I run through it like a bat out of hell.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

K9 companionss

I filled out the initial application to apply to get a "facility dog". That is a dog that is trained like a companion dog for individuals with disabilities, but it is assigned to a professional who works with individuals with disabilities. That person would of course be me, and possibly also Pops who is a physical therapist.

The dogs are labs or golden retrievers-or a mix of the 2. They are 2 years old when you get them. They have lived with and been trained by a family, very similar to how guide dogs for the blind are trained. The primary person who will be with the dog then has to go to 2 weeks training at the Canine Companion facility with the dog they will take home. Having and working with the dog is like having and working with a guide dog. The are working dogs. The application process is quite detailed and they are very choosy, rightfully so. For those who make it through the rigorous application process and are accepted to get a dog, the wait can still be 6 months to 2 years. So I thought I'd get going on it.

It is a dream of mine to be able to fully integrate a highly trained dog into my practice. I have seen some kids do signing, talking and playing for an animal (dog and guinea pig) that they didn't do for me. I'd also love to be able to have a dog to take and interact with kids in the special ed day classes etc.
Yes-that would mean that at the moment my home would be quite busy. That piece I'll get to later.
Will post more as I hear more.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

American Idol

I am getting hooked again. Pops and I on the couch rating the singers. Kids love the show. Aj goes to bed and belts out made up songs. His own personal show.

Danny Gokey. The church singin' widower. A sweet heart. LOVE that guy.
Adam Lambert. He'll got far-but her he doesn't do it for me. Too plastic.
Lil Round. A darling mother of 3 with a charming personality.
Go Mama!
Jorge Nunez. A cute guy! I love that there is a latino guy in this. He got booted :(
WRONG. Anoop was saved. He is attractive-yet narcasistic. Blaaa.

Monday, March 09, 2009


You know you're getting older when you can't find your grad school buddy on facebook, but you found his teenage daughter.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The Prom Revisited 20 Years Later

Pops with his senior prom date with their kids, 20 years after the prom.
Beautiful kids-Ki as a merchant and DK as Aladdin.

Aj's mail

The following is a card Aj received in the mail today:

Dear Aj,
You were wonderful in Aladdin. You were very convincing. Your outrage at the monkey was perfect! I was so PROUD of you.


(last years classroom teacher that made me crazy with anger at her. I later came to like and respect her. How very supportive of Aj she is.)

Hot Mamas-small world

Do some of you remember the MP gym class for special needs kids that many of us took our kids to? We all loved Teacher Karen. Well it turns out Teacher Karen is the sister of one of the moms who worked on the play. Karen's sister is also Ki's Brownie leader. Karen came to see her niece in the play. She recognized my kids names and faces and came up to chat after the play.

Karen reminded me that when Aj was little he thought her name was "Jim". Because I would say, "Aj, we're going to Gym now."
We would arrive and she would say, "HI AJ!"
He would joyfully respond, "Hi Jim!"

Monday, March 02, 2009

Final Night of the Green Room

The final show. FABULOUS.
Al loses it when I break his anticipated rule and don't bring the actors from stage to green room at a time when I previously had.
He begins to rage.
A father of one of the kids steps in and raises his voice to Aj. Halfway through his reprimand he realizes that Aj is my son, not just one of the many actors. Actually, I was burned out by Aj and didn't and much. The Dad apologized a few times. He was really embarassed.
Aj continues to spiral down.

At the shows end I walk around with Aj trying to get him to calm down. I get him to stop crying and we walk in to see Mr. Cc. He is Aj's 1:1 aide at school and has come from the east bay to see the play. Sadly, aj is too out of sorts to pull it together to chat much.

I think the reason Aj had so much trouble on the nights of the performances was because he was tired, his ADD/ADHD meds had worn off, he channeled his stress this way and because I was there to direct his strong emotions at.

Other then that, Aj enjoyed it all and was fine at all other rehearsals. He did an excellent job with his lines. He was tremendous. As good or better than some of his peers. And so was Ki. She loved it too and she came out of her shell and became more confident.

I had a great time learning more about the theater. Getting to know parents I hadn't known before and spending more time with those I knew only a bit. I think Aj (and Ki) gathered more adults, and hopefully some kids, who will support him and greet him in the community.

Sat matinee

This is the performance that I go to see with Pops and Granny. Kurt also convinces his Dad and brother to go. Jennyalice comes with 2 year old Lucy and Lee comes with her 5 year old twins.

Lucy enjoys the show. Every few minutes or so she calls out,"WHERE DID THE PRINCESS GO?" or "WHEN IS THE MONKEY COMING BACK?" After intermission Lucy gets antsy and the comments increase. Jennyalice declares it is time for them to go. Later, jennyalice shares that Lucy bellowed across crowded the parking lot, "I WANNA SEE THE PRINCESS!!! I'M AFRAID TO GO HOME WITH YOU!"

Aj spends part of his time on stage wincing to locate Pops and I in the audience.
Once again he does a fabulous job of delivering his lines, even if a bit too loudly. When it is his turn to bow he runs up the stage and slides in for a bow. TA DA!
All come forward for the final bow and he pumps his arms, motioning the crowd to stand. He is looking for a standing ovation. The curtains close. Then, against the unspoken rules of the theater, Aj comes running down the side of the stage and into the audience. He is looking for Mom and Dad. He is cracking me up and my eyes are watering I am laughing so hard at his joy.

The show was amazing!! I loved it so very much. I am so proud of my kids and I really enjoyed it.

Fri Night Show

Ahh. The first real show. The chatter in the green room continues and is even higher. They are SO excited. Mr. L., the Principal and 2 other teachers make their cameos and the crowd loves it. Ki’s eyes are SO beautiful with the make up on I am floored. Aj was very edgy right when we arrived. He did not want to vary from having the same eye pencil used to draw his “facial hair” despite being told by myself and another Mom he adores that it wouldn’t work well. Just before show he is getting more edgy. The stress of the show about to start and Aj about to blow was more then I could handle, so I called Pops to come hang out with him.

One of the monkeys knocked her nose on Aladdin’s head just seconds before she was to go on stage. She thought she was bleeding and did not go on stage. The scene was artfully rearranged by the cast and then later the whole scene that was missed was redone. It was seemingly unnoticed by the crowd. Our dear friend Sandrini drove down from Napa to see the show. I forgot to turn in money and forms for kids to receive a rose with a note at the intermission. So instead I gave them each the big bouquets that Sandrini had brought them. (I told them they were from her). Many of the kids got flowers from other family members and from friends. Ki got a flower and card from 2 others kids in the play. Alex got 2, but then we realized the last name initial and that they were for the girl Alex. He began to unhinge. I told him I was SO sorry I didn’t give him flowers. He said he didn’t want that. He wanted flowers from one of the other kids. My heart started to break. Alex was ramping up for a big melt down and the play was to start in a few minutes. I couldn’t even allow myself the feelings that were glaring at me through the door of the green room tent. Luckily, Pops ended up managing Aj. And “the show went on.”

At one point part of a set fell and a Mom balanced it behind stage for the remainder of the scene. During a set change a basket of lemons and oranges from the market scene was knocked over. Fruit sprawled across the stage and was followed by frantic actors and stage crew.