Friday, December 30, 2011

...falling into place...

...I am not sure what is going on...but things seem to be falling into place.  Well, that is kind of a broad statement, but a lot of things seem to be going in my...in OUR favor here of late. 

Of course, it is over things that could be considered "trivial"...what is falling into place??? 

Well, for starters, my house has been clean for 23 days straight.  Well, not the whole house...but Little Man's room, the family room, the kitchen and the hall bath.  We still have to tackle our room, our bathroom, the computer/play room, and the basement.  Oh, the basement.  Big Daddy has to work on the garage, but that mess is ALL his.  It has taken awhile, but we are finally purging things out.  Big Daddy has been bringing boxes home from work...we mainly sort the Garage Sale and Donation items in these, since they are disposable.  Items that we want to keep go in Rubbermaid totes.  Items that need to be thrown out are thrown out.  I don't even ask Big Daddy (or Little Man, for that matter) about it.  It is gone.  When the weather gets nicer, we are going to have an EPIC Garage Sale!!!  My laundry is caught up, the carpet has even been vacuumed.  Dishwasher is unloaded/loaded regularly and recycling items are taken out on a regular basis (this is a HUGE issue in our kitchen).  Toothpaste blobs (oh, the toothpaste blobs!!!) are wiped up before they harden...my wish is that one day, Little Man does not squeeze half a tube of toothpaste out every time he brushes, but I will pick my battles.  Please don't go over my "clean" house with a white glove...that will come in time.  Right now, this is good enough for me.

The whole housecleaning thing may not be a big deal to everyone, but it is a big deal to me.  When we moved into this house five years ago, I was very gung-ho.  I was a regular Suzy Homemaker.  Then things spiraled.  My depression took hold of me.  My anxiety took hold.  My OCD (perfection) took hold.  How bizarre is it to think that I wouldn't do a job AT ALL if I couldn't do it right???  It was easier to sit with my thoughts, or simply fall asleep when my thoughts became too overwhelming...why set myself up for failure???  I am just glad that this is becoming routine.  I believe that FlyLady says that it takes 21 or 28 (I can't remember) days for something to become habit or routine.  I am THRILLED that I am just about there.

A lot of our purging and cleaning is because Big Daddy wants to move from this house.  I don't.  I love this house.  This is the house that Little Man knows as home.  We love the school, we love our neighbors, we love the location.  Of course, we are renting this house...still.  Big Daddy wants to get a place that is cheaper.  That will be hard to come by...it will be smaller, or an apartment, or (with our luck) won't accept pets.  If we leave this house, it will be for the big move.  To Florida.  Yes, we are still considering this, and it was kind of heightened when Big Daddy had to fly to Florida last week for his Grandmother's funeral.  Sure, he was there in less than ideal circumstances...but I know it was important for him to spend TIME with his family.  Yes, we love my family...and they do a lot for us, but lately our immediate family has proven more and more important...my immediate family will always visit Florida, so we will always see each other.  Extended family, we may not see so much if we move to the Sunshine State, but we see them so rarely here...and we are within a short drive!!!  Holidays, yes...but not much outside that.

I am much happier all around...I think I can attribute a lot of that to my change in jobs.  Yes, I left my full-time job in finance in June of 2010.  I was hired part-time with the school district in August of 2010, and went full-time August 2011.  My job is not guaranteed past June of 2012.  This may play a huge part in our decision to move to Florida.  I love my job...of course, many days it is a roller coaster ride...but I love it.  Things could fall into place, and another preschooler will need my help next year and I will be offered another full-time position.  If that doesn't happen, we have to be prepared for what may come.

Little Man is doing all right.  I say all right.  It has been awhile since I last posted, but I did touch on his anxiety.  We sought the help of a professional.  We took him to see a Psychologist at Cardinal Glennon in mid-November.  She did not talk to him, but talked to myself and Big Daddy for an hour and a half!!!  She was afraid that she could not give him the help he needed in the short time frame that we had (biggest concern: anxiety over toys and how close we were to Christmas).  We were referred to St. Louis Behavioral Disorders Institute.  Well, they couldn't get him in.  At.  All.  He has been coping all right.  Christmas was touch-and-go.  He got a couple of toys that are "triggers", but just covers his ears or eyes when he gets around them.  I am not jumping to return them (mainly because I didn't get a gift receipt) because hopefully we can work through this.  We are still looking to get him with a Psychiatrist, because the Psychologist thinks he needs to be put on an anti-depressant.  I have great reservations about this, but am willing to explore the options.  We are also facing therapy, figuring at least once a week.  I have been through this...as an adult.  I can't imagine being seven years old and needing this kind of help.

We are heading into 2012 with less debt than we headed into 2011 with.  Slowly but surely, we are chipping away at this.  This is a VERY good thing, because we are at the tail end of the Trust that Big Daddy got when his mother passed...we will have less liquid cash, but more invested for the future.  This could also be a factor in us moving down south...having a little extra saved away in the event that we don't find work right away, or take a cut in pay.

I am still looking to get back to school, but don't know how I can fit it in right now. 

This week, I took on extra hours at work.  I was scheduled to be off, since my preschool class is not in session...but I took shifts with the year-round preschool classes and elementary out-of-school program.  I am thankful for the extra hours, but had to report to work at 6:30...meaning the alarm was going off at 5!!!  This will hopefully get me back into the routine of waking up early, and HEADING TO THE GYM!!!  Of course, I will be heading back to the gym with all of the other New Years Resolution-ers, but hopefully I will stick it out for awhile.

I am taking a break from my calendar this week.  Well, I know for sure that Little Man doesn't have anything planned, but I have avoided it altogether lately.  I know next week, we will be back in the swing of things, but I really needed a break from all of the running around.  Sure, we still have Exerfun on Tuesday evenings, and will still have our Cub Scout Pack and Den meetings, but that is about it.  I cut out his two-night-a-week swim lessons.  The lessons were moved to Saturdays, but no pressure...no running out right after work, no grabbing dinner through a drive-thru on our way home.  Sure, we have to be at the lesson at 8:30 am, but that is about the extent of it.

Those are just a few of the things that seem to be working, or things that we are working on.  Life is a work in progress.  I am excited to see what the new year brings.

Love to all.

Friday, October 14, 2011

...Going to the Pumpkin Patch and Taking More Photos...

...I always tell myself that I am "going to be better about taking pictures".  I feel that I am letting Little Man's childhood slip right through my fingers.  I don't think that is entirely true, but I always feel like the 'occasion' doesn't "merit a photo".  What is wrong with taking photos of the everyday???  Of course, I would get a lot of shots of Little Man sitting at a computer, chewing on his finger!!!  I also tell myself that I don't take more photos because things "just aren't right"...meaning my house is just too messy, or Little Man has chocolate around his mouth...meaning the shot won't be 'perfect'.

Wow.  I really need to let go of this 'perfect' thing.

I was going through some photos on my camera this evening, transferring them to my 'new-to-me' laptop (Big Daddy bought himself a new laptop in June, and COMPLETELY hated it from the beginning...so yay me, it's mine!!!  We won't even mention how my old laptop is currently crashing and Big Daddy is currently restoring it as we speak.  Wow...this has been a hella-long sidenote...).

Anyway, I was going through photos this evening.  Because I am obsessive/compulsive about TRIPLE checking that my photos are not only on my laptop, but saved to a Sim card AND a CD, I started going through old photos from my old laptop (because I wanted to double check that I had them, even though it would have been too late because of the computer restore)...I have some great pics of Little Man when he was a baby.  Sure, I can see that the carpet might have needed to be vacuumed, and I could see that we were STILL living out of Rubbermaid totes in our townhouse (three moves in two years, including our move from Florida and one while pregnant) and I can see that some of Little Man's baby toys were right near a cable TV outlet (???)...I don't think he could have hurt himself, right?!?!?

Point being...no, my photos were not set like those in Sears Portrait Studios (ummm, okay) or Kiddie Kandids or Portrait Innoventions (I don't know where people get pics anymore...we use local photogs).  No, they are more worthy of being on the website "You are NOT a Photographer"...because, I am not.  I am a Mommy with a (I thought pretty nice) point-and-shoot digital camera.  No fancy lenses, no fancy filters.  It does the job I need it to, when I get around to using it.

Yes, my friends.  You will start to see more photos from me.  Oh, and I really, REALLY need to work on the whole weight loss/getting healthier thing...there were pictures from our Walt Disney World trip last fall where I look pregnant...and yes, I still weigh more than I did when I delivered Little Man...this is a whole other blog topic for another day...

Where does the Pumpkin Patch fit in???  We took Little Man to our local pumpkin patch today.  I have all sorts of pics of him over the years at this particular pumpkin patch.  It has been in our area since I was a little girl.  What made me (and Big Daddy) laugh today was that I definitely knew I needed to back my pictures up...my camera still had LAST YEAR'S pumpkin patch photos on it!!!  Funnier STILL was that Big Daddy was getting Little Man's clothes laid out for today...he came SUPER-CLOSE to wearing an almost identical outfit today that he did to the pumpkin patch last year!!!  (Red polo shirt and plaid patchwork shorts...too windy today, so Little Man wore jeans and a hoodie.)


Here are some of the (91) photos I snapped today...















Love to All

Sunday, October 9, 2011

"Is He Okay?"

Is he okay???  Is he okay???

Seems like an innocent enough question. 

Last Saturday, Little Man had a Cub Scout event.  It was scheduled from noon until 6pm, it was designed to introduce new Tiger Cubs and their families to some of the events that Cub Scouts participate in.  The flyer indicated that the families could arrive at any time and register between 11:30 am and 4:30 pm.  We arrived around 2:30, figuring it should give Little Man plenty of time to experience what "Tiger Day" had to offer.  We arrived, picked up our "guide map" and started having fun.

We first stopped at a Civil War reenactment.  Little Man got to try on costumes, hold pretend guns (???) and every few minutes, an older man would light a "cannon" and shoot out "cannonballs" (really, tennis balls with the fuzz taken off and painted black).  The boys had a blast chasing after the cannonballs...Little Man did not come out with any, but he had a blast all the same.  We learned about "Leave No Trace" which is basically leaving the Earth cleaner than you found it.  We also learned about hiking safety.  Big Daddy and Little Man got to go on a small hike (I was wearing the wrong shoes...note to self...when attending Cub Scout events, how cute you look doesn't matter...comfort and safety does).  Little Man (with the help of Momma with the glue gun...oh, how I love hot glue guns) made a neckerchief slide for his uniform, learned how to properly fold a flag and salute it.  He also learned about Cub Scout safety and earned his Weeblo badge.  All of this activity (and the walking around, it was a LARGE park) took about three hours!!! 

The last activity we did was Archery.  Little Man had been looking forward to the Archery and/or BB Guns all day.  We only had time to do one activity, and Archery did not have a line.  We loaded into the truck, and Big Daddy drove us to the area with Archery.  For whatever reason (and I am not going to ask at this point) Big Daddy stayed in the truck (???).  Little Man was getting more and more excited, jumping up and down, flapping his hands.  We were let into the Archery area once the previous group had cleared out.  It was set up with eight targets, two archers at each.  Nobody came to Little Man's target, and I was kind of relieved.  One of the Scout officials (not sure of "rank"...I can't keep them all straight...all I know, he was an adult and he was wearing a uniform with a lot of "decoration") was telling the Scouts how to pick up the bow.  Okay, we were already lost at this point.  I was trying to pay attention AND keep Little Man from wandering and for him to at least pay some sort of attention.  The Scout Guy was zipping (and I do mean zipping...he was going really fast) along with instruction, and Little Man kept asking me if he could play on the playset.  I was about on the verge of tears, when another Scout Guy came over and tried to help.  After unsuccessfully trying to get Little Man to pay attention, Scout Guy 2 asked "Is he okay?"

What???  It took a minute to register.

"Is he okay?"  He asked it a second time, rather quickly.  He knew the answer, but just wanted to make sure.

"He has Autism", I said. 

In that second, I realized I had never really said those words out loud.

He has Autism.

And I cried.  In the three years that we have "officially" known, I had never uttered those three words.

Scout Guy 2 told me that he thought as much, and knew about "the rainbow" and had worked with a high functioning young man in his den for years.  He knew just what to do.  He gave me a hug and went to work with Little Man.  At this point, Big Daddy came out of the truck, figuring "something was up"...really, your wife in tears and an overgrown Boy Scout comforting her???  You think???  It took awhile for Little Man to grasp it, but he did manage to hit the target.  I couldn't have been prouder!!!  Of course, Scout Guy 2 gave him a few extra arrows to work with, but nobody had to know.

This whole Cub Scout thing is going to take some work, and some patience.  I don't know who Scout Guy 2 is, or if we will ever see him again...but I thank him from the bottom of my heart...for understanding.

This post has been brewing in me for more than a week now...it has been a difficult week for Little Man.  He is putting more and more pressure on himself.  We just wrapped up the first quarter of First Grade, and so far in math and spelling he has only missed two answers.  All quarter.  Two.  That's it.  Two.  Silly spelling words.  All I heard from him was "I'm sorry, Mommy.  I will try harder.  I'm sorry, Mommy.  I will do better."  And he made himself so sick, that he threw up.  Really???  Am I putting pressure on you, Little Man???  He did not make the Gifted Program in school (he is book smart, not inquisitive enough, though)...and he made himself sick over it.  Toys are another sore subject.  He does not play anymore, he is afraid of ruining or losing his toys.  He threw up in the middle of Costco just LOOKING at new Fisher-Price Imaginext toys.  We can't even mention asking anything from Santa this year.  Yes, there is a lot going on in his Little World.

And we're waiting to hear from a Child Psychologist.

Yes, Little Man will be seeing a professional.

Big Daddy took him to his annual check-up last week, and mentioned some of our concerns.  Our pediatrician agreed, and thought it would be a good idea for Little Man to talk to someone.

I guess the apple does not fall far from the tree.  Somehow, I feel responsible.  I am sad, but happy.  Sad that it has come to this, but happy that he will get the help he needs.

My heart is breaking, but I know...he is okay.

Love to All

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Perfectly Happy

As I sit and type this, I am missing my 20th High School Reunion.

Yep, not going.

I keep up with many classmates via Facebook.  We are all over the country.  For awhile (during the ten year reunion time) I was even out of state, living in Florida.  I have since moved back "home" and am even now working in the very elementary school I attended. 

I was a "middle-of-the-road" type kid...I was friendly, not too popular, but not unpopular.  I made my way through High School, keeping busy with extra-curricular activities, hanging out with my friends, doing okay grade-wise...I collected my diploma that June day back in 1991 and I was finished.  I went back to my Alma matter just once, to deliver a forgotten notebook to school for one of my sisters.  I can't even recall attending school plays or productions or assemblies for my sisters or brother in the years that followed.  I did not attend any more football games or school plays.  I was ready to move on.  Some friends went away to college, I stayed home.  I went to Community College, and decided it really wasn't for me.  It took me awhile to really find what I wanted to do (it was 1996 and I decided I wanted to work for Disney).  I don't have any stand-out good or bad memories about high school...it is just a chapter of my life I was ready to close.

Fast-forward 20 years, and it is reunion time.  Sure, I live less than ten minutes from my old high school, and I really had nothing planned for the Homecoming Football game, but I didn't go.  It really didn't interest me.  One thing I have noticed, even though we are all 20 years older, I am not sure much has changed.  There are still the "cliques" and "circles" it seems after all these years.  I was reading my Facebook feed this afternoon, and found out that there was a fight at a bar where my classmates were celebrating at after the game.  Really???  We are all pushing 40 and a fight broke out???  Yeah, not interested.  I am sure I would have seen many friendly faces, and we all would have been cordial...but I truly am not interested. 

Do I feel weird not attending???  Not at all.  I still keep in touch with my best friend from those days.  We are still close.  I would call her my close friend, but not my "best" friend.  At my age, I feel a little silly calling someone my "best" friend.  That title would belong to Little Man or Big Daddy, anyway.  Yes, she is a very close friend, and we have fun together, when we can get together.  I am guilty of wrapping myself in my little cocoon of life and pushing "girl time" to the back burner.  We have quite different lives...she is single and has a great career, travels all over the world and loves to work in our community theater group.  I am a Mommy, love my job (I am a big kid at heart) but it is certainly not a glamorous career, we travel to the same place all the time (I am NOT complaining) and my social calendar is more PTO and Cub Scout meetings rather than Cosmos with the girls.

And I am perfectly happy that way.

Today we saw "The Lion King", went to the Scout Shop to pick up Little Man's Cub Scout uniform, had a nice lunch and took a nap.  Tonight I am going to sew patches on the uniform and spend time with my family.  No, not glamorous, but it is just the way I like it.  I will look at the photos, and maybe say something nice about them...

...but I won't say "I wish I were there"...

Love to All.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I Have Free Time??? Really??? Me???

...as stuffed as my calendar seems to be here of late, I seem that have free time, lately.  Really???  Free time???  I can't imagine.  I work 6-8 hours a day, I have a VERY active seven year old.  We have swim lessons, Exerfun classes, Cub Scouts, PTO meetings, school activities, homework, book reports, doctor appointments, and probably half a dozen things I am forgetting.  Granted, my house is nowhere NEAR perfect, we hit the drive-thru a couple nights a week, and I still haven't hit the gym in the mornings...BUT I have managed to find some free time.

You see, I am stepping away from the computer.

No, I am not giving up the computer completely...I am just stepping away.  I LOVE the computer.  I have found some wonderful people with common interests (Disney, anyone?!?!?) and I have been able to catch up with old classmates, co-workers and far-away friends.  I still enjoy this.  I am not going to let it rule my life.

A little over a year ago, Big Daddy let me quit my full-time job.  We had to consider this carefully, as it was a good chunk of our income.  I had worked for my former company for almost eight years, made a decent living and had great benefits.  It was a decision that we did not take lightly.  Of course, it seemed like the job was slowly killing me.  Sounds dramatic, but I had lost zest and zing more than anything.  That is for another blog post!!!  We also had to consider that Little Man was going to full-day Kindergarten and would not be bussed to my parents house after school, as he had when he was in preschool.  (Turns out, he COULD be bussed to my parents house after school...but THAT is for another blog post!!!).  All-in-all, I could quit working full-time, go back to school, and find a way to supplement our income (either by taking care of children in our home or working part-time).  My last day was in late June.  I was in heaven.  I could stay home with Little Man during the summer, take him to the park and the pool and have all sorts of fun in the couple of weeks that we had together before he started Kindergarten.  Yes, we had a great couple of weeks.

Then school started.

Big Daddy was on his summer work schedule, so he was working mornings.  I would get Little Man off to school, and was gung-ho getting the house straightened up, laundry done, and dinner made.


For a couple of weeks.



Then I started "hanging out" on the computer.  Facebook, twitter, online shopping.  Killing time.  Things started slipping.  Depression took over.  It is hard to describe (perhaps another blog post about this?!?!?) but I kept slipping further and further into my depression.  Even after finding my (then) part-time job with the school district, I was depressed.  The computer seemed to help AND hurt me.

But I am breaking free.

I will still catch up with my friends and family, near and far...but I will not allow myself to get sucked in.  I can't. I can't sit on my couch, in front of this laptop and "dream" about the life I want to lead.  I need to live it.

I am faithfully jumping back on (for about the BAZILLIONTH time) FlyLady, who assures me that "progress, not perfection" and that I can do ANYTHING in just 15 minutes.  I will still try to keep all of my "plates" spinning outside of home and work.  I will be able to do this better while my bottom is not stuck on the couch.

What does this mean for the blog???  It means, I should be able to devote more time to it.  It really does help me.  It is not exciting or glamorous, but it helps.  I would like to do product reviews for people just like me.  Busy moms who want the best for their families, not wanting to "cut corners", but knows that any effort is better than no effort at all.  So, I won't be able to throw that roast in the oven tonight and serve Big Daddy and Little Man the most "home-cooked" of home-cooked meals...whatever.  I found a product that allows me to serve a meal, and we can eat together as a family...and I want to share it.  So, I love to shop and am still working on finding bargains (I have a WAY to go on this one) but I want you to know what to spend your hard-earned money on and what to save.  No, I am not big...and I don't get product endorsements.  I am just a Mom who wants to share.

Love to All.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Mama Cub...Scout, That Is...

...still trying to get back into the routine of things...Little Man has been in school for a month exactly.  My calendar is QUICKLY filling up.  I don't know if I can juggle everything.  I have to learn how to say no every once in awhile...it is hard, but I am learning.

Little Man showed interest in Cub Scouts...we knew it would be a commitment, but I had NO idea how much of a commitment.  Two meetings a month, for starters.  I no sooner signed my $65 check to join, then we were being told about the upcoming "popcorn sale" (which comes after the PTO Entertainment Book sales, during the PTO TJ's Pizza fundraiser and right before the PTO Cardinal's Calendar sale).  Yeah!!!  The night we signed up, we were informed of the Boy Scout Field Day.  Two.  Days.  Later.  I really had planned on taking Little Man (Big Daddy was working overtime that Saturday).  I even bought Little Man a new white tee shirt to tye-dye.  Yeah, after spending 12+ hours at school that Friday, my back was not cooperating with the thought of a Field Day.  When we signed Little Man up for Cub Scouts, we were also told about the semi-annual camp-out...that was scheduled for three weeks later.  I knew there would be camping involved, but I thought we would get a little more "practice" camping or something...I have not been camping in about 20 years...and I didn't like it much then.  IF Big Daddy can get the weekend off, and IF we can get all of the gear together and IF we can figure out even how to use it, then MAYBE we can go to the camp-out.  I am not holding my breath on this one.  We will be more prepared for the Spring camp-out.  I may even think of attending this one!!!  That same night, we were informed of the Cub Scout Car Wash to be held in two weeks.  Sounds like fun...heck, it is only three hours, out in the sunshine and the Scouts will divide 40% of what they earn in their each Scouts account!!!  Whoo-hoo!!!  That will come in handy when it comes time to get his uniform and supplies.  Now, we are also told that the Boy Scouts try to do something every weekend.  Every.  Weekend. 

Yes, this is going to be something enriching for Little Man, but we have a life outside the Boy Scouts.  I have a life outside the Boy Scouts.  Since Big Daddy is still working evenings, I am the one who signed on as the "Adult Partner"...every Cub Scout has to have one.  I am the one attending the meetings, I am the one attending fund-raisers, I am the one attending activities.  I am glad that we signed him up for this, but I am a little worried that it could take over.  I am back to working full-time (34 hours, but 34 EXHAUSTING hours!!!), I am taking Professional Development Courses for my job, I am helping the PTO, I am volunteering in Little Man's classroom, I have a husband, I have a son, I have a house that needs TLC, Little Man has swim, Little Man has Exerfun, Little Man has expressed interest in soccer...most of all, I have Little Man.  Even though Cub Scouts is for Little Man, I have to make sure that I am 100% there for Little Man.  He is going through a lot, and I want to make sure that I am not spread too thin.

Yes, I am excited for Cub Scouts and what it might mean for Little Man, but I will not let it take over our life.  We have our first meeting in the next month, and I will see how it is going to go.  I don't want to sound like a "Debbie Downer" about it, I just did not know what we were in for.

Love.  To.  All.

Monday, August 15, 2011

...a kick in the big, fat, gut...

...so I had a doctor's appointment today...to get a skin tag on my neck removed.  Pretty routine.  I have had the tag for the better part of ten years, and it really hasn't bothered me, until recently.  I get pretty tired of the preschoolers pointing at my neck and asking "what is that???".  It has also been getting caught in Little Miss M's hair when she sits in my lap...OUCH!!!  My General Practitioner was able to remove it in his office...the "procedure" was super-fast, it took longer for me to get comfortable in the chair than it did to get the tag removed.  Pretty painless...taking the Band-Aid off of my neck will probably hurt most of all!!! 

No, the procedure was pretty painless...the most painful part was stepping on the scale.

I dread the scale.  I loathe the scale.  Sometimes I love the scale.  I obsess over the scale.

Today, I hopped on the scale, feeling pretty confident.  Not that I thought I had lost a great deal of weight or anything, but I was expecting to see a better number than I last saw...I figured I probably lost a pound or two...eating somewhat better and all of the activity I get chasing around Little Miss M at work...it had to account for something, right?!?!?

I have gained four pounds.

I now weigh more than I did when I delivered Little Man.  I am 25 pounds heavier than I was when I had Little Man.  That was seven years ago.


The number scares me.  The number terrifies me.  I feel it.  I am tired.  Something has to change.  I am not good with this, this is how I got here.  I can do it, I have done it before...but I am not good at it.  Even as much as I was scared when I saw the number, what did I do tonight???  Yeah, a Happy Meal, Jack in the Box tacos and a big ol' Diet Coke.  Procrastination, I am really, really good at.

Oh, my head is spinning.  Let's see how tomorrow goes.  First step, setting the alarm to be out the door at 5:15 am to get to the gym.  Seeing as it is seven hours from now, I am not holding my breath...but will hope for the best.

Love to All. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

What A Way To Waste A Day...Really, Not In A Good Way...

...lazy Sunday...they can be good...they can be bad...today was, what felt like a good one...but it turned bad...

First off, The Husband and I were (kind of) awoken to Little Man..."I'm hungry, so I'm going to make my own biscuit"...I said, "That's fine...if you need help, let me know"...rolled over, and dozed back off...I thought it was around 7:30...surprised that Little Man was so hungry so early, but he is usually up and eating on a school day...and he is an early riser anyway...a few minutes later, Little Man came in our room again... "Mommy, I can't get the straw in my juice pouch...can you help me???".  I helped him and rolled over to go back to sleep...when The Husband says "No wonder he is hungry, it is 11:30"...11:30?!?!?  Really?!?!?  We must have been wiped out, because it is rare that we both sleep that late...that got the day off to a pretty pukey start...

It took a lot for me to get going...a muffin for breakfast and some playing around on the computer...okay, maybe a lot of playing around on the computer...because all of a sudden, it was like 3:30...what a way to waste a day!!!  Nothing good.  At this precise moment, The Husband decided to ream me up and down about my lack of motivation and not wanting to do anything.  THAT is the way to motivate someone who is already struggling...

I understand that The Husband is truly frustrated, and he usually says very little...but he just does not understand that you don't "motivate" someone struggling with depression and anxiety by telling them everything they are doing wrong.  It shuts me down each and every time.  I did eventually get some laundry done, cleaned a counter in the kitchen and unloaded/loaded the dishwasher.  Not a lot, obviously...but to me, it is better than nothing.

We had a very late lunch, Subway, it kind of started the whole "you don't do anything" discussion...we were not hungry for dinner so we ate nachos while watching the WWE "SummerSlam" pay-per-view.  Not healthy or balanced, but just enough.  I have groceries to make dinners all week...now I just need the motivation!!! 

This is gearing up to be a busy week...

Monday ~ work (7:45 am - 12:30 pm), Doctors Appointment (1:40) to finally have the skin tag on my neck removed!!!, back to work (3:45 - 5:15), swim lessons for Little Man (6:00 pm). 

Tuesday ~ work (7:45 am - 4:45 pm), Professional Development for work (6:30 pm - 8:30 pm).  Little Man was supposed to have his "Exerfun" exercise class this evening, but we have to miss it.  He will be at my parents while I am in training. 

Wednesday ~ work (7:45 am - 12:30 pm, then again 3:45 pm - 5:15 pm).  It is also Little Man's 7th birthday, so we might try to do something special, even though The Husband has to work...

Thursday and Friday ~ work

Little Man's birthday party is next Sunday.  It is at our local bowling alley, so there is not a whole lot I have to do in preparation for it.  The cake is ordered, we have all of the WWE themed-balloons (I have to blow them up, but that won't be a big deal) and centerpieces and treat boxes.  I don't know WHAT to put inside these treat boxes...I figure there will be a trip or two to Target this week in search of party favors.  I detest the cheap plastic favors that kids seem to accumulate...but I don't want to spend an arm and a leg, either...

So a lot going on...I see some Happy Meal dinners in our future, but I am going to try my best to actually MAKE something...actually DO something...I like trying new recipes when I can (as long as they are easy, and not filled with "weird" ingredients)...and I do like the satisfaction of seeing a clean countertop or having folded laundry, ready to wear...or not have to call Little Man to bring me a roll of toilet paper when I need some!!!  Small steps...it is all I can do...

I know it isn't exciting, but it is my life...

Love to All.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Don't know what to call this one...

Yes, it was just another day...I am really trying to get back into the routine of blogging...my life is not exciting, my life is not adventurous, my life is not glamorous...it is just my life...the story of a mother, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a preschool assistant, a chauffeur, a chef, a baker, a bookkeeper, a referee, a nurse, a housekeeper, a dreamer and a doer...those are just some of the "hats" that I claim to wear...I don't even wear all of them very well, but I wear them.  Nope, it is not exciting, but it helps me to get it all out. 

I am back to juggling a lot...back to working full time...the last year has been a lot of fun, but not very productive.  Okay, the last year may not have even been a lot of fun...dealing with a lot of depression, a lot of depression that I did not get help for.  It is a vicious circle, but I am trying to take control again.  Small steps.  Yes, my house is still a mess...yes, Little Man and I eat McDonald's Happy Meals more often than not...yes, I still prefer sitting on my couch playing on my laptop to going to the gym and working out...yes, I still like the (tiny) rush that I get when I walk into Target...I still have all sorts of stuff that I am working on, but I have to take things one day at a time.

Working full time has exhausted me this week.  Working 34 hours with "Miss M" keeps me busy.  She reminds me SO MUCH of Little Man when he was three and four years old...except, she has SO much more energy than Little Man did.  She is very impulsive.  I know the last couple of weeks have been hard on her, back to preschool, back to a different routine, starting services at another school, riding a bus three days a week, and on top of things, her mother is going to have a baby any day now!!!  She is having a hard time adapting, but that is where her therapists and teachers come in.  I am just support.  I don't freak out when she bites, kicks and hits me.  I know it is not right, and the preschool coordinators know about her actions, but I know in her little world, that is the only way she knows how to cope.

Speaking of coping, Little Man started back to school this week, himself.  He started first grade.  It has only been a week, but I have been getting glowing reviews from everyone at school.  I am so grateful that I work at his school!!!  I am thankful that he is adapting so well (so far)...it has been a challenging summer.  His latest "actions" are to make himself throw up.  No, I am not joking.  When he gets upset about something, or thinks that we are upset with him, he vomits.  I wish I were kidding.  I spoke to his Case Manager at school, and she is concerned.  He also threatens to "harm" himself.  I say "harm" himself...it is not in a super-hurtful way, usually something like "I am going to hit my head, I am so mad"...nothing that can hurt him too badly.  Of course, I am sure it could escalate into something worse, that is why we are trying to nip this in the bud.  We are trying to get him into a new Pediatric Neurologist, not that we were not happy with his current Neurologist...we like him a lot...problem is that he does not accept our current insurance.  I have been trying to get in contact with the Neurologist that our Pediatrician recommended, and I have been trying for a month now.  By the time I get an appointment to see this Neurologist, our new insurance (it is open enrollment right now) will kick in and Little Man will be able to see his current Neurologist again...arugghhhh!!!

The gym will be part of my routine starting Monday.  Okay, so I HOPE the gym will be part of my routine again.  It has to be part of my routine again.

So, today was pretty uneventful...Costco, coupon clipping, wasting a lot of time on the computer...I did make dinner (go, me!!!).  Now, I am not going ever claim to be a chef...but I will take my small victories.  Tonight, I made "Quick Pasta Carbonara" from kraft.  I tweaked the recipe a bit...but here goes...

1/2 lb. fettuccine (we had Angel Hair Pasta, just used that)
4 slices  OSCAR MAYER Bacon, chopped (I used Oscar Mayer Real Bacon Bits Recipe Pieces)
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, cubed (I used a whole block)
1 cup  frozen peas (I increased to 2 cups)
3/4 cup milk (I doubled to 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup  KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese (increased to 1 cup)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder (liberally used garlic salt)
 
Here are the real directions...I just throw all of the ingredients in a pan and heat through until everything is melted!!!
  COOK pasta as directed on package. Meanwhile, cook bacon in large skillet until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet with slotted spoon, reserving 2 Tbsp. drippings in skillet. Drain bacon on paper towels.
ADD remaining ingredients to reserved drippings; cook on low heat until cream cheese is melted and mixture is well blended and heated through.
DRAIN pasta; place in large bowl. Add cream cheese sauce and bacon; mix lightly. 

Not the healthiest meal out there, but it is always popular...I can try it again with a whole wheat Angel Hair pasta (we don't mind whole wheat) and the 1/3 less fat cream cheese...I don't know how to make the bacon any better...maybe turkey bacon???   

So much to still catch up on...the whole are we moving to Florida debate?!?!?  Yeah, that changes every day.  Trying to go back to school?!?!?  Ummm, I am on "academic suspension" from almost TWENTY years ago!!!  Oh, and we haven't had my car in over a week because it needs $2300 worth of repair!!!  So much going on in my life, I want to be able to still take a shot at blogging it...maybe someday I will be an "inspiration" to someone who is going through all that I am going through...until then, I will take the small victories, take my lumps, celebrate or mope...things are finally going my way...and I want to ride this roller coaster as long as I can!!!

Love to All. 


Thursday, July 28, 2011

...general goings-on...

...apparently this is a monthly thing for me!!!  I hope to get back to blogging pretty regularly.  This summer has been busy...not really a fun kind of busy, but busy all the same.  I can't believe that we start back to school in a little more than a week...where have the last eight weeks gone?!?!?

We have made a couple of trips to Branson, MO to visit Silver Dollar City.  We are always pleased when we go there, the park is clean, their employees are friendly and it is relatively cheap to get away for a weekend.  It is the closest to the "Disney" feeling that we get here in the Midwest!!! We have made a few trips to our local pool, we don't go as often as I'd like, but I am working a LOT more this summer than last, so I will take the few trips that I can get!!!  Mike was working the day shift at the high school, but just this week, he went back to the night shift, which means, for us, the summer has just about come to an end!!!




Just last week, I officially accepted the position to help out my friend Little Miss M in her last year of preschool.  I am still waiting to hear the details on how many hours a day I will be working, it all hinges on the services she qualifies for.  I am excited for this next chapter in my "career".

I got the "welcome" letter from Little Man's first grade teacher today.  First grade.  I can't believe it.  He is doing so well this summer.  His meltdowns and tantrums have subsided.  Of course, it is not to say that he has not had any problems.  The biggest problem was that he cracked the back of his head during a tantrum.  Yeah, two staples.  That was some fun for Mommy.  The staples lasted a week, and getting them taken out seemed to be worse than having them put in (that is not saying much, because it was not my head that got the staples!!!).

...okay, so it has taken me ALL NIGHT to write this, and it has not amounted to much!!!  Hopefully I will get back into the swing of things, but in the meantime, I will be happy just taking things one day at a time.

Love to All.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

...okay, so I took a couple of MONTHS off!!!

...my last post was over two months ago, oh my!!!  A lot has happened.  Right around the time that I stopped writing, I began working more hours at the school.  This time, I was working one-on-one with a little girl in a preschool classroom.  I worked from 6:30 am - 8:00 am with the preschool group, and then 8:00 am - noon as a one-on-one.  It was so very rewarding, but so very exhausting!!!  Four year old little girls have a LOT of energy!!!

My little preschool friend, Miss M is in need of a little extra help.  I only get bits-and-pieces, but she has been diagnosed with something, and qualifies for services from the school district next year.  From my un-trained "Mommy-eye", something tells me she is on the Spectrum.  She is bright and well-spoken, just awkward socially (they brought me in because of aggressiveness toward other classmates, originally), very into routine and is kind of a loner.  Miss M reminds me of Little Man when he started preschool.

Of course, hanging out with Miss M makes me realize just how far Little Man has come.  It is amazing and inspiring.

I was working a pretty good amount, more than I was certainly used to...and like I said, four year olds have a lot of energy!!!  Some days, I would come back to school and work from 2:45 pm - 5 pm.  Combine this, with the schedule of activities that Little Man and were already keeping...and I was exhausted.  I was also falling deeper and deeper into depression.  I am not sure why...maybe I was feeling overwhelmed.  I am not certain.  I am slowly, SLOWLY coming out of it...I need to see a new psychiatrist...I must really need to be on some sort of medicine.  I freaked out so badly with the last one that I was on, that it kind of scared me about any of them.  This is something that I will work on.

When school let out, I was working 40 hours a week...yes, 40 hours!!!  That quickly changed once they realized that we did not have as many kids enrolled as anticipated.  I am working about 32-ish hours right now.  It is about perfect.

I have also been offered to work with Miss M once school starts in August.  This is good (I get more hours, and would be off work when the kids are out of school) and bad (when she goes to kindergarten, I am out of a job, and not guaranteed a position after that).

This got us to thinking.  If I am "out of work" this time next year, it sure would be easy to move back to Florida.

Yes, we talk about this all. of. the. time.

This time, it may be for real.

More on that later, I am tired.

Love to All.

Monday, April 18, 2011

...so I took a few days off...

...yes, I have taken a few days off...when I got back into blogging about a month ago, I was gung-ho about blogging everyday.  Well, life happens, and while I do spend a good part of my waking hours on the computer (far too much time), I don't always have something to talk about.  The whole point of me blogging was kind of a vent/journalling for my therapist.  I would rather take a couple of days off an put out a quality product rather than churning out something blah for quantity sake.  I am over it.  :)

As far as the housecleaning/organizing part of my life goes...I am chipping away.  I still have a LONG way to go.  Our neighborhood is having a community garage sale on 6/11...so our goal is to have the garage gutted (that is Mike's job) and a good deal of the crap from the basement. A little less than two months...it CAN be done!!!  I am getting used to daily routines...even something as simple as emptying (and loading) the dishwasher or doing the laundry.  I have to establish these routines.  It may sound crazy to some, but it is NOT laziness...it is a bit of perfectionism rearing it's ugly head.  It seems so overwhelming sometimes that I would rather not tackle it than do (possibly) a bad job.  I have to figure, from now on, that even a bad job is at least a job done!!! 

Little Man's IEP has been scheduled for May 9th.  I am excited, but a little scared of what will come out of it.  I am not sure why...

I re-joined Weight Watchers last week, and attended my second meeting this morning.  I lost 3.4 lbs this week.  Small loss, I know, but a loss is a loss...and it is all going to add up.  I am very committed this time.  It seems easier this time around, but I am also just starting!!!  ;)

I know it is not much of a blogpost, but I wanted to tell myself that it was okay if I didn't post every. single. day. 

On to the 30 Day Blog Challenge...

Day 15- Put your iPod on shuffle: First 10 songs that play

...this one should be easy, and fun!!!

Learn to Fly - Foo Fighters

What Time Is It? (Original Version) - High School Musical 2 Cast

I Alone - Live

Separate Ways (Worlds Apart) - Journey

XTC vs. Adam Ant - They Might Be Giants

Summer Breeze - Seals and Crofts

Lightning Crashes - Live

U + Ur Hand - Pink

Black Magic Woman - Santana

I've Been Waiting - Matthew Sweet



That's about it!!!  All I know for now...

Love to All.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

...one day at a time...

I gotta take everything one day at a time...sometimes down to one hour, or even one minute at  time.  It is hard for a lot of people to understand.  That is okay.  I just keep doing what I gotta do.  Just keep swimming, just keep swimming.

Little Man had a good day at school and a pretty good swim lesson. 

Tomorrow will be the end of this crazy week, and for that I am thankful!!!  I want things to get back to "normal".

Here is today's installment of the 30 Day Blog Challenge...

Day 14- A picture of you and your family





This one is pretty easy, however I had to go back to Thanksgiving 2009 to find it!!!

Must take more pictures.

Love to All.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

...Wordless Wednesday...


I know this is an old photo...but the eyes had me from the beginning.  I love this Little Man!!!



Day 13 of the 30 Day Blog Challenge...


Day 13- A letter to someone who has hurt you recently



I may have to get back on this one...I have not really been hurt by anyone recently...except maybe myself.  I always beat myself up!!!  I might have to devote more time to this one!!!

Love to All.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

...just another day...

...not much going on around here...worked, volunteered in Little Man's classroom, took a nap, puttered around the house, then the Tuesday afternoon routine (swim lessons and Exerfun).  Tomorrow, I work for a bit in the afternoon (heaven help me...with 4th and 5th graders!!!) and we start Coach-Pitch baseball.  I will admit, I am a little nervous about the whole being part of a team thing, but it is important for Little Man that we try...

...so, we are on Day 12 of the 30 Day Blogging Challenge...

Day 12- How you found out about Blogger and why you made one

I think I found out about Blogger via Twitter...many of my "tweeps" had blogs already and I began to follow them.  I thought, why not???  The timing was perfect...my therapist wanted me to journal, and I am not a "pen and paper" person much anymore.  Sure, my blog is not exciting, but it is therapeutic.

That is about it.  The posts this week are short and sweet.  Lots going on.

Love to All.

Monday, April 11, 2011

...back on track???

Okay, so I put my big girl pants on and went back to a Weight Watchers meeting today.  I am currently at the heaviest weight I have EVER been.  I am even heavier now than when I delivered Little Man almost seven years ago.  I seriously have to look at this as a lifestyle change (I know, I have always said that).  I will have to monitor my food intake and activity for the rest of my life.  I am not a professional, though I have visited professionals, but I believe that I am addicted to food.  I don't eat if I am happy/sad/lonely/depressed, etc.  I eat because I like it.  It gives me a high.  I equate this to what a drug addict or an alcoholic feels like when they get their "fix".  Of course, you need food to live...you don't need drugs or alcohol.  This is where the struggle comes in.  I also look at the money side of it.  I spent $140 at the grocery store yesterday, and I have to ask myself "what did I get???".  I could spend four bucks at McDonalds, get two McChicken Sandwiches, a small fry and a large Diet Coke.  All that, and I don't have to cook.  I have to change my way of thinking.  I bought a lot of fresh produce and lean proteins and low-fat dairy.  Now, I have to learn how to cook/prepare/serve these things. 

Tonight, not so good.  Dinner was Macaroni & Cheese.  Kraft.  From a box.

I am getting better.  The fast food thing is going to be hard.  I am going to have to wrap my head around the new PointsPlus system.  Mike and I are committed to going back to the gym this week.  I just need to plan, and we all know how good I am at planning.  :)

On to the 30 Day Blog Challenge...

Day 11- Another picture of you and your friends




This is a pretty old photo...I had to dig it out.  Again, it is me, Lisa and Lia.  I think this was taken in maybe 1993-1994-ish.  I am not good with the dates.  We may not have been 21 yet.   If we were 21, it might be just barely...or Lia and Lisa were, and I still had not had my birthday.  I remember thinking I was such a cow in this photo...oh, how I would love to go back to this weight.  I would love to find a photo of me at my thinnest...which was around 1999-2000 when I was living in Florida.  I did not know how to cook, and I did not have a lot of money to eat out all of the time.  I am not sure how I survived, but I did.  I was also very good about working out each and every day.  I will have to see if I can find a photo and scan it in. 

That is about all I know for now.

Love to All.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

...wiped out...

...so this will be short and sweet...just the 30 Day Blog Challenge today...

Day 10- Songs you listen to when you are Happy, Sad, Bored, Hyped, Mad

I don't get to listen to a whole lot of my own music it seems!!!  I do like all sorts of music.  I was mostly into the whole eighties-techno-new wave type music.  My favorite group of all time was (is???) Depeche Mode.  I also liked The Cure, INXS, U2 and They Might Be Giants.  The Goo Goo Dolls were a favorite for awhile, as ws Matchbox Twenty (and the solo Rob Thomas).  I listen to a lot of Disney Music, either from the movies or (my favorite) the Theme Parks.  I might have to give this question some more thought and come back to it.

It is gonna be a crazy week, but I hope to get some "real" blogging in. 

Love to All.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

...beautiful day...

...I feel renewed today...I feel that winter is over and spring is FINALLY here!!!   Today the weather has been more summer-like, and I am okay with that.  As I write this, it is 5:30 pm and still 89 degrees.  I'll take it.  I actually like (no, more like love) the warm weather.  Little Man has had a good day.  We went and saw the movie "Hop" this morning, and he loved it.  He had a hard time with some of the previews (why previews are always so loud is beyond me), but regulated himself by plugging his ears.  We went to lunch after Mike worked some overtime today, and he behaved.  He played with the little girl,T*** that lives in the house behind us, they ran around in her sprinkler.  She had another friend over as well, and he played very nicely with both of them...none of the needing to be first or being mean to the other girl because HE "was T***'s friend FIRST".  He did very well.  I was proud.  Now he is playing Wii Sports Resort with Mike.  A very good day, indeed.

Day 09- Something you’re proud of in the past few days


I would have to go with the conversation that I had with the father at swimming lessons on Thursday.  MY Little Man, giving another father hope.  It made me feel good. 

That is about all for today.  I am off to enjoy with my family.

Love to All.

Friday, April 8, 2011

...nothing at all today...

...I feel like I am neglecting the blog a little bit today...we have LOTS going on...so I will just stick with the 30 Day Blog Challenge...

Day 08- Short term goals for this month and why

My short term goal is just to get through the month!!!  It is kind of busy in April...and I am picking up more hours at work next week (with the 4th and 5th graders...heaven help me!!!).  Little Man has swim lessons, Exerfun and the start of Coach Pitch Baseball.  This in addition to going to school.  I have the extra hours at work and some professional development that needs to be completed.  Easter is just around the corner.  I just want to get to May (for lots of reasons).

That is about all for today.  Sorry it was nothing much.

Love to All.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

...it IS hard...

...today is just one of those days where I would rather sit on the couch and play a card game on my laptop.  That ain't gonna happen!!!  I try to sneak away and play a game, but that blank blogger screen behind my game won't go away, so I am just going to jump in and do it...

Of all things, Little Man's elementary school was on "external lockdown" because of a shooting (?!?!?) in a nearby neighborhood.  To quote from the email that was sent to parents shortly after the incident, "Law enforcement does not believe that there is an immediate threat to our schools. However, as a precautionary measure, we will be going into exterior lockdown to limit the outside access to students. When schools go into exterior lockdown, school activity goes on as normal inside the building and there is no outside school activity."  This meant that the kids were not able to go to recess or have outdoor PE classes, and it was such a shame because it was a very nice day today.  Little Man did report that they had lunch in their classrooms, which I found interesting.  Luckilly, the students did not notice much change to their regular routine, which is a good thing.  Little Man is very into routine, and when his schedule is changed up he can have difficulty dealing with it.  I talked to him about today's changes, and he had a little difficulty with his afternoon recess (it was indoors as opposed to the outdoor morning recess) and had to visit the Resource Room.  Other than that, he had a pretty good day. 

That all changed when we went to swim lessons. 

For whatever reason, when we got to lessons today, all he wanted to do was play and float in the water, turn his listening ears off and not do a thing his instructor asked him to do.  We had two major meltdowns.  I had to explain to him that the instructor was there to not only teach him how to be a better swimmer, but she was there to keep him safe.  The meltdowns left me exhausted and in tears.  The instructor was so sweet and surprisingly knowledgable about kids on the spectrum (I did not give her enough credit the other day).  It seems that she really wants to work with Little Man and see him succeed.  I filled out the paperwork for his private swim lessons, and his instructor is going to have the woman in charge of their Special Needs Program (forgot the name for it already) observe him in his group class (most likely) on Tuesday.  I am ready for this.  I want him to succeed, and I want him to continue doing something he enjoys.

What most made my day was that a father came up to me after the lesson (I was wiped out and emotionally exhausted after that lesson) and asked me how old Little Man was.  We got to talking, he said he heard me talking with the instructor on Tuesday, and that his 3 1/2 year old son was just diagnosed with Autism.   He just said that it was high functioning, did not go into if it was Asperger's or not, but a lot of his son's characteristics sound like that of Little Man.  He said that watching Little Man gave him hope.  Now that is something that a Mama likes to hear.  It sounds like his son is on the same path of treatments and therapies that Little Man was.  This gave ME hope.  I know we are doing everything we can for Little Man, but to "see" it from another parents eyes kind of cements it.  I know some days are harder than others and we have our ups and downs, but this kind of makes me feel better.

Of course, this father I spoke with did not witness Little Man's two meltdowns (his son has lessons after us).

On to the 30 day blog challenge...

 Day 07- A picture of someone/something that has the biggest impact on you







My Little Man has the greatest impact on me.  I always knew I wanted to be a Mommy, but I never knew I could love someone so much.  He is the greatest joy in my life.  Yes, there are days where I am drained or I want to throw in the towel, but he keeps me going.

Love to All

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

...not much still...

Yeah...not much going on in my little world right now.  Worked a regular shift at work today...HOWEVER, when 8:30 rolled around, I made my way down to Little Man's classroom to volunteer for the next three hours!!!  I am so fortunate to be able to help out the way I do, and I appreciate being able to work with children.  I think the volunteering gives me "practice".

Little Man has been having some social skills issues lately...yesterday, he BIT another student at recess.  This is our first biting incident.  I don't know where it came from.  I tried to talk to him about it, but he doesn't say much other than he was not feeling mad or angry when he did it. (?!?!?)  I don't understand, but he won't sy much more.  Today, things might have turned around a little bit.  When he came home, he was excited because his "card" stayed on "green" all day  His kindergarten teacher has a system of red/yellow/green cards for behavior.  The green card means he had good behavior all day.  That was good.  He also earned a "PRIDE"ticket.  When a student shows good behavior, demonstrates pride (PRIDE is also an acronym used for their school "pledge"), helps another student out or just plain does something worthwhile, they earn a "ticket".  When the student earns 10 tickets, they get to have a lunch with the principal (whom Little Man thinks is a Rock Star anyway).  Little Man has 61 of these tickets now!!!  Most importantly, Little Man said that he apologized to the little boy who he bit yesterday.  I asked if his teacher or resource teacher or a recess teacher prompted him to apologize.  He said, "nope...I just decided to do it on my own.  I was sorry for biting him and I wanted him to know".  I MELTED.  Small steps.  Small steps. 

Today is day 6 of the 30 day blog challenge...

Day 06- Favorite super hero and why

I have never really been into the whole super hero thing.  Now, if you can consider Mickey Mouse a super hero, then he is my favorite.  No, he does not wear a cape or tights, but I think he is pretty remarkable.  Especially Sorcerer Mickey...he is curious and a little bit mischevious.  I think that is all right!!!





That is about all I know for now.

Love to All.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

...wiped out...again...

...so this will be short and sweet...I worked another "long" day with the preschoolers today.  I am tired and I ache.  Little Man had swim lessons today.  His instructor advised that he enroll in private lessons...because of social skills, temper tantrums and over the last three lessons, he is falling behind.  I am actually okay with this.  I don't want to take swim lessons away from him...he loves them so much.  BUT, I don't want him to get frustrated.  Yes, these lessons are going to cost a little more, but I think the payoff will be worth it.

Now, how do I arrange for a one person Little League team?!?!? 

Day 05- A picture of somewhere you’ve been to





Ummm...Walt Disney World.  To those of you who really know me...this should come as no surprise!!!

Love to All.

Monday, April 4, 2011

...ick...

...I feel icky, oh so icky...

I did not sleep well last night.  I stayed up later than usual (watching Wrestlemania, of all things...) and we had severe storms roll in the area around 2:30.  Pair both of those with waking up at 5:30, and all I wanted to do was come home and go back to sleep.

Yeah, didn't happen.

One of the Preschool Teacher's Assistants called in sick, so I was asked to work until 2pm.  I am wiped out.  It is not like I have not done this before, because I have.  Today, all day, all I could think about was how my weight is LITERALLY weighing me down.  Preschoolers are so active...so full of energy.  I could barely keep up.  All of the ups and downs and bending and stretching.  Even before I was asked to work late, I thought my knees were giving out.  When the kiddos got out their mats and blankets for naptime, many of them asked for me to rub their backs, so they could fall asleep.  Of course, I obliged...but I kept thinking to myself how I must have looked like a big blob of goo (much like Jabba The Hutt) "rolling" around the floor going from kid to kid.  Ick. 

So I worked from 6:30 am - 2 pm.  I did not know I was going to be working past 8:30, so I did not eat anything.  Of course, my supervisors and the Preschool teacher offered to give me a break if I wanted to grab something to eat.  Heavens, no!!!  I don't like to eat in front of anyone, so I declined.  I could just wait until I got off of work at 2, right???  Wrong.  I binged on, of all things, McDonalds.  Ick.  Then I had pizza for dinner.  I am literally dry heaving.  I feel fine, I am just gagging from the amount of food just sitting in my stomach right now. 

I don't know if I am strong enough to change, yet something needs to be done.  Yes, I have done Weight Watchers before...with moderate success...but I don't stick with it long enough to see it through.  Yes, they tell me (and I know) that it is a lifestyle change.  Right now,  my lifestyle is lazy.  Barely doing enough to get by.  This all has to change.  I am scared.  For the first time ever (if you can believe this) the other day, it hit me...this is the only life that I have to live.  Right now, I am dying.  This addiction, this obesity, this lifestyle is killing me.  I can't sugar-coat it.  It is killing me.

Apparently, I have to be in the "right" mental state of mind to get the health/fitness part underway.  Will this ever happen???  How do I make it happen???  I have a feeling that I will be making a call to my therapist soon.

So, I am on day 4 of the 30 day blogging challenge...I think it all kind of ties in to today's post...

Day 04- A habit that you wish you didn’t have

I honestly wish I could say that eating was a habit that I wish I didn't have...but I know that we have to eat to live.  I just can't live to eat.  I need to change my relationship with food.  It can't rule my life.  I have to know when to stop.  I have to learn control.

I really don't have any "bad" habits to speak of.  I tried a cigarette ONCE (and it was 13 years ago) when I had been drinking with friends...and vomited.  I don't drink to speak of...I have not had a drink in years.  I think I had a beer five or six years ago.  I always said that I would rather eat my calories than drink them (that is why I love Diet Coke).  I have curbed my spending habit.  I guess one of my "habits" is Disney...but I don't regret that one.  Yes, I would say that the OVEReating is a habit that I wish I didn't have.

That is about all I know.  Hopefully the next post will be a little more positive!!!  I am in a pretty good mood, just tired and very full.

Love to All.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

...day by day...

...today has been a bit of a struggle.  Sometimes I feel like a defiant child.  When I get told something, I want to do the opposite.  Every day, I have to work at this.

We are watching Wrestlemania 27 this evening (again, don't judge!!!) so I will make this short and sweet tonight...

Day 03- A picture of you and your friends





...this is a photo of me, Lisa and Lia.  I have known Lisa since we were 11, and in the same sixth grade class.  She now lives near Boston.  I have know Lia since we were about 13 and in (awkward) middle school.  Lia lives about 20 minutes away, and ashamedly, I don't spend enough time with her.  Embarassingly, this photo was taken aout a year and a half ago.  I need to a) spend more time with friends and b) take more pictures...of friends, Little Man, life in general.

That is about all I have for now.

Love to All.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

...had a good day...almost forgot about day two...

...we have had a pretty good day...the AT&T U-Verse guy showed up EARLY and we think he FINALLY fixed the problem we have had with our televisions for over a month now.  We had a really nice lunch, it was All-You-Can-Eat, and I was surprisingy full after a salad and one plate.  Ummm, All-You-Can-Eat.  I did really well this time, I think.  We waited around and had dessert a little while later.  We capped the day off with a visit to the park.  Of course, in between, Mike did kind of ride me about what little I have been doing around the house.  I pointed out what I have done.  He acknowledged that, but kept on about what still needs to be done.  He does not understand.  I can't change that.  I am working on what I can do.

Anyway.  It was a good day, overall.

Here is day two of the thirty day challenge...

Day 02- The meaning behind your Blog name

...I really did not put a lot of thought behind it...my blog was created originally because my therapist wanted me to journal.  I used to do a lot of writing when I was younger, but anymore, I find that I don't have the "time" to put pen to paper.  My blog was more of an outlet, and not very exciting.  It was to focus on, just another day.  The my little world part was just because it is supposed to be the goings-on of what happens, in my little world.  Not very exciting.

That is about it.  All-in-all it was a good day.

Love to All.

Friday, April 1, 2011

...already stuck...and tired!!!

Okay...so I am tired.  I napped today, yes.  I worked three more hours than usual, yes.  We had fish fry from the nearest Catholic Church for dinner (no, I am not Catholic, but I appreciate their tasty, fried fish).  I am wiped.  My boss, who drives 45 minutes to our job, works full time, has a husband and three kids, one of whom is a special needs (Downs Syndrome) three year old, and she seems to always have IT together...my boss tells me that I "look tired".  Yes, today I was part of a team that overlooked 25 full-of-energy-and-not-wanting-to-listen-kindergarteners...that may have had me a little frazzled, but I have NO excuse to look "tired".  I don't do enough to merit a "tired" look.  I know this whole changing-my-life thing is going to come slowly, but I should not look or feel tired.

But, tonight I am wiped out.

I am going to default tonight to starting one of those cheesey "30 Day Challenge" things that I can bounce back on on days like this.  I will still blog when I have something to talk about (tonight, I got nuttin'), but I will commit to at least updating this over the next 30 days...


Day 01- A recent picture of you and 15 interesting facts about yourself

...a recent picture of myself...I don't feel pretty or skinny enough to take pictures, so there are very few of me.  The one used for my blog, most websites where you have to upload a pic of yourself, twitter and facebook are all from a Christmas Party in 2009.  It has been cropped to high-heaven so you can't quite see my cheeks and double chin!!!  I think I may have a pic of me from Walt Disney World last fall...must work on taking more pictures so my future grandchildren and great-grandchildren will actually know what I look like...







...okay, so there is a pic of me, Mike (LOVE the classy wife-beater he is wearing in what is our most recent family pic) and Little Man.  Yes, my husband is a born-and-raised Floridian, and his philosophy while being in the Florida sun is NO SLEEVES.  Classy.  I try not to take too many pics of him while we are on vacation!!!

Fifteen interesting facts about me...this may take longer than I thought...

1) I am the oldest of five children.  We all range in age from 22 to 37.  I thought I was going to have a big family as well...but am secretly glad that Little Man is an only child.

2) I love working with my preschoolers and kindergarteners.  I really think that I relate to them...I am a big kid at heart!!!

3) I wanted to be a teacher when I grew grow up.  First, I have to grow up!!!  Second, I have to get over my phobia of chalk!!!  Thank goodness most classrooms went to white boards!!!

4) I am NOT a good cook at all.  I have ruined Hamburger Helper, and Little Man has described my Kraft Macaroni & Cheese as "yucky".  I am trying, and getting better (Little Man will now eat my mac & cheese).  I am so not a cook that, when I met Mike, all I had in my kitchen was a box of chocolate Teddy Grahams and a case of Diet Cherry Coke.  I blame my weight gain on his ability to cook and his feeling sorry for me and feeding me.

5) I miss Florida.  I love Saint Louis.  I hate winter weather.  My family keeps me here.

6) I loved working for Disney, but at the end of the day, I prefer being a Guest.

7) I like to watch professional wrestling.  Don't judge.

8) I am a "reformed" shopaholic.  I use the term reformed loosely.  Yes, there was a time when my Target addiction was upwards of $1000 a month.  Yes.  Target.  I still like to shop, but don't spend that kind of money.  I am not as compulsive as I used to be.  I thank therapy for this.

9) Yes, in case you are new to the blog, I can admit freely that I have been in therapy.  I still need therapy.  It is an ongoing thing.

10) Diet Coke and Diet Dr. Pepper are gifts from God.  Really.  Have you worked with 3-4-5 year olds at 6:30 in the morning???

11) Even though I have to be at work at 6:30 in the morning, I am not a morning person.  Morning and I have never been friends.

12) I love to read, and it is not uncommon for me to get into a new book and stay up all night reading it.

13) I love to watch SpongeBob SquarePants with my Little Man.  I also adore the show Olivia on NickJr.  If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it.  I don't care how old you are.  She is a very wise little pig.

14) That being said, I don't know what I would do without my DVR.  I can watch "my" shows whenever I get a chance.

15) I can't believe that I came up with 15 different things.  Interesting or not, I did it!!!

So I don't forget the daily topics, I have listed them in today's post...



Day 02- The meaning behind your Blog name

Day 03- A picture of you and your friends

Day 04- A habit that you wish you didn’t have

Day 05- A picture of somewhere you’ve been to

Day 06- Favorite super hero and why

Day 07- A picture of someone/something that has the biggest impact on you

Day 08- Short term goals for this month and why

Day 09- Something you’re proud of in the past few days

Day 10- Songs you listen to when you are Happy, Sad, Bored, Hyped, Mad

Day 11- Another picture of you and your friends

Day 12- How you found out about Blogger and why you made one

Day 13- A letter to someone who has hurt you recently

Day 14- A picture of you and your family

Day 15- Put your iPod on shuffle: First 10 songs that play

Day 16- Another picture of yourself

Day 17- Someone you would want to switch lives with for one day and why

Day 18- Plans/dreams/goals you have

Day 19- Nicknames you have; why do you have them

Day 20- Someone you see yourself marrying/being with in the future

Day 21- A picture of something that makes you happy

Day 22- What makes you different from everyone else

Day 23- Something you crave for a lot

Day 24- A letter to your parents

Day 25- What I would find in your bag

Day 26- What you think about your friends

Day 27- Why are you doing this 30 day challenge

Day 28- A picture of you last year and now, how have you changed since then?

Day 29- In this past month, what have you learned

Day 30- Your favorite song
 
...here is to getting through the next thirty days...heck, here is to getting through the next thirty hours!!!  I can do it!!!
 
Love to All.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

...temper tantrums, social skills, funny little compulsions and the like...

...Little Man was diagnosed with Asperger's when he was three.  I had a hard time wrapping my head around it.  My main goal was to get him whatever services he needed to make him "normal".  Mike was almost in denial of the whole thing.  He thought we were blowing things way out of proportion and all he needed was a little more discipline. 

Yes, I am the mother in Target who you were looking at when her child was "misbehaving"...when it was really more like he was reacting to the sound of the vacuum cleaner that the associate was running in the Misses section.  Yes, I am the mother who you saw on the corner of the parking lot, waiting patiently and hoping not to be late to the doctor's appointment because her child was stepping on and off the curb 50-some-odd times because he "wanted to get it right".   Yes, I am the mother who you are in line in back of at McDonalds, hoping you are being understanding about the delay in getting to order because her child is counting and counting, trying to make the right decision of whether to have chicken nuggets or a cheeseburger for dinner.  I am even the woman at Walt Disney World who you rolled your eyes at while waiting in line to see Buzz and Woody, because her son had to stop and make sure that Woody was going to sign his autograph book on the "right" page, because he dropped his book and lost that page.  There are all sorts of little "tics" that Little Man has that I have grown accustomed to, or have simply gotten used to over the years.  I give you a small smile, hoping that you are understanding, but knowing that you, like my husband USED to think, probably think that my child just needs some more discipline.  Asperger's is an "invisible condition".  To see my son, he looks like every other average six year old...but I know that he has a definite different way of doing things.  And that is okay.

Little Man has had Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy since he was about two and a half, when we realized that something was just "not right".  He was able to start preschool at our school district at the age of three.  He has absolutely flourished.  He is now in kindergarten, still working on Speech and OT, but also has a class for "social skills" and has the resources to use if he is feeling overwhelmed or has a meltdown.  He has a great team working for him.  I am glad that I was so vigilant about getting him the services that he needed, and I am glad that Mike turned around.  I just explained to Mike that we would rather have him take full advantage of all of these services that DH thought he "didn't need" than to let him fall through the cracks.  I was determined not to let my son become a "Lost Boy".

This is not to say that we still don't have our struggles.  Just today, at swim lessons, Little Man threw a kickboard and had a temper tantrum.  The swim instructor, who is very good, but very young told me that he had to "work on his tantrums". Part of me wanted to stand up and shout "you don't understand...my son is on the Autism Spectrum...he can't alway help how he acts...please be understanding!!!".  I didn't.  I told her that it is somethig that we are always working on, and we would continue to work on.  I told her that he really loves coming to swim lessons, and asked her what he did well in today's lesson.  I did my best to make a "bad" situation good.   Little Man and I came home and discussed that it is never acceptable to throw a kickboard, that it is simply not safe.  We also talked about listening to our swim instructor and trying our hardest.  I learned that Little Man was frustrated because he is the youngest of the three boys in his class, and he is not always finishing first, or even finishing at all.  He sometimes has to start a lap over because his feet touched the bottom of the pool.  Wow.  I explained to him that he is still learning, and the older boys have had more experience.  I feel better being able to talk things out with him.

I know that there is no such thing as "normal" really.  Everyone has their own way of thinking and doing things.    Asperger's is not something that Little Man will outgrow.  It is something that he will learn to cope with.  I am STILL trying to learn as much as I can.  It is a new experience every day.

As far as MY own struggles go...I am still coping.  No nap yesterday (yeah me!!!) and managed to get a few things done around the house.  Unloaded/loaded/ran the dishwasher.  Did a load of laundry and folded about half of the eight baskets of clean laundry.  Does not sound like much, but to me it was the world.  I also worked four extra hours at school last night, working at the before/after school program registration.  Not that it should be an excuse for not getting more done, but that was a chunk of my evening.

Now to get off this computer and get a few more things done today.  Thanks for listening, because I am sure I did not make much sense in this ramble!!!

Love to All.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

So Much for a "Wordless Wednesday" post...I'm Back, Baby!!!

Wow...I have not blogged in awhile.  I am back on the wagon, friends. 

I don't feel like there is much going on...I'll think about some updates...

Little Man...
Little Man is doing great.  Kindergarten is going well.  We had his parent/teacher conference earlier this month...he is reading at a second grade level (proud, nerdy mama here!!!).  He is also doing very well at math (mama is proud, but mama is admittedly a little scared since mama is not good at math...here is hoping he does not ask for help from me!!!).  Social skills need some working on, but this seems to be something that I can expect from a child with Asperger's.  We are so lucky to be in the elementary school that we are...we have such a great team pulling for Little Man.  I am fortunate to be able to work at the same school that he goes to...I feel that I am a little more involved.  I see his teachers and other members of his team just about every day.  With my job, I am able to volunteer in his classroom on Tuesdays and with other kindergarteners on Fridays.  He is flourishing, both in school and at home.  We still have swim lessons on Tuesdays and Thursdays and we will start (Coach-Pitch) Baseball next month. 

My (not really new) Job...
I love the change in careers that I made last year.  The Credit Union where I worked was a very good company to work for.  They were very good to me, and very fair to work for.  I just was not 100% happy.  I was not content to be a teller for the rest of my life.  It just seemed so mundane to me, and not really what I wanted to be doing.  Mike and I decided that last June I could take the plunge and quit my job.  We agreed on a "deadline" of our trip to Walt Disney World in late September to either a) get a home-based daycare underway or b) find another job. Well, I found another job.  A part-time job, but another job...following my heart...I was going to be working with children in our district's before/after school care.  I was fortunate enough to get a job at Little Man's school.  I started out working with the second grade group before school.  Right around Thanksgiving, I moved to the preschool group.  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE working with the preschoolers.  This is where I want to be.  I love my preschoolers...just today I was told that a) I was pretty, b) my shirt was pretty, and c) that I smelled good.  I love what comes out of their little mouths and minds!!!  I also get lots of hugs, and that makes everything better!!!  Since my job is part-time, our agreement is that I go back to school.  I am SLOWLY working on that.  I am scared.  I am sure that there is enough going on there for me to write another whole blogpost about!!!

My Weight Loss...
Ummm...yeah.  This has stalled.  Part is it is ALL my doing...I cancelled Weight Watchers last December because of spending the $40/month and getting nowhere...of course, I was doing nothing and getting nowhere.  I have actually GAINED ten pounds since I quit my full time job last June.  Ten pounds that I absolutely do not need.  I am determined to get back on track...eat better...get back to the gym.  All of this has to be one step at a time.

My Deprression, Anxiety and all that Jazz...
We changed insurance plans last October (I think I might have touched on it in an earlier blogpost).  We are STILL getting the hang of it all.  We have all but met our deductible (I think we are ten dollars away), so I will be able to visit my therapist at no cost.  I could have visited my therapist before, but it would have been costly.  Mike has encouraged me to visit my therapist, and I have missed her terribly...BUT I have been as stubborn as a child about not going...I think I have been a little lazy.  I have been a little lazy about a lot of things.  I probably should go back.  I will make a resolve to go back.  Babysteps, babysteps, babysteps.  I have also not seen my psycharitist (sp) in awhile.  I know I have to, and I have "taken myself" off of all of my depression/anxiety meds.  I know I was not supposed to just stop them, but I feel okay.  I hated all of those different pills and what some of them did to me (probably a whole other blogpost in the waiting right here!!!).  I am determined to find a new doctor and hopefully take a new course with meds.  I have not been as compulsive with some things (shopping...I have not been shopping like I used to...go ME!!!) but I know that there is still a lot that I need to work on. 

Moving (or Not) Back to Florida
My heart is in the Sunshine State.  My mind is here in the Show-Me-State.  We still have the daily debate on whether or not we will move back.  Right now, we are doing okay here in MO.  Little Man is doing well and his school is great.  We are in no position to move right now (too much stuff to get rid of/.pack up) but it is in the back of our minds.  I think the deal-breaker will be how much more Mike can handle at his job.  He is currently not very happy...but he is sticking it out.  I don't want to hold him back.  I know the only job he was TRULY happy at was when he worked Security at Walt Disney World.  I hate that we took him away from that (again, I know that this could be a whole other blogpost!!!).  I love and admire him for "sticking it out".  I have always told him that if he wants to go back, we will.

Everything Else...
I think what is weighing heavily on me right now is my lack of motivation.  I work two-ish hours a day, but I have no motivation to do anything else.  I don't go to the gym, I don't organize my home.  I hardly keep up with daily chores!!!  I am so ashamed and embarassed about my lack of motivation.  I get home from work, eat breakfast and then go back to sleep with Mike (his sleep schedule is all sorts of messed up, and he sleeps from about 9 am - 1 pm).  Mike has been a good sport, for the most part.  I think his patience is wearing thin.  He is tired of not having clean plates and utensils when he needs them (seriously, how hard is it for me to load/unload the dishwasher???), a spot on the counter to work on (because I feel that clearing the counters is "overwhelming"), he is the one doing the laundry (really, is it too much to ask for clean underwear???).  Right now, I am staring at EIGHT (yes, you read that right...eight) laundry baskets of clean, unfolded laundry.  My husband was good enough to catch up the laundry, but I can't manage to even fold it.  I am not going to beat myself up over it, but I am going to get to working on it.  I have always followed http://www.flylady.net/ and know that I can do anything in just fifteen mintues.  My simple goal today is not to go back to sleep.  Of course, I need to get off of this computer (it has been my crutch over the last few months) and get moving. 

I have opened so many doors...and there is so much more that I want to work on.  :)  From the daunting task of getting this house "move-ready" (our phrase for cleaning/purging/organizing...act like we are moving out of the house!!!) to the simple task of simply taking more pictures...Little Man is not going to be little forever!!!

This all ties together...my depression, my stall in weight loss, my "zoning" and neglecting day-to-day duties.  Everything will not change overnight, but I need to take it step-by-step.  So, off I go...I am going to throw in a load of laundry, load the dishwasher and clear off one kitchen counter.  Does not sound like much, and believe me there is SO much more to do...but this is just the beginning.  One step.  And I can do it. 

Love to All.