Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Vacation, Part 2

Vacationing with kids basically means, packing up the majority of your home so your kids still home, stuffing your car, answering the question, "how much longer will be in the car?" three hundred times, and then unpacking the car at an unfamiliar location so that you can resume doing all of the same things you do at home with a few extras. How does that make any sense? 

I've actually been arguing against a vacation for over a year, but I am definitely glad we had the opportunity to stay at the lake house. It was a very low-key vacation, and I know Walter was glad to get away from work. 

Isabella tried to catch a fish. Or, in her words to my dad: "We almost catched a fish, really, we almost did!"  

I think we'd been at the lake house for about five minutes when Isaac spotted these ducks, and they joined him for every feeding over the following five days.

I have to run. This was a quick one since I'm trying to squeeze in a post while Isabella writes her assigned sentences.


Friday, July 26, 2013

Baby Spoon, Big Spoon

I distinctly remember certain milestones from my childhood. One in particular, stood out to me last week when Isabella told me she didn't want a "baby" spoon, she wanted a "big" spoon. As inconsequential as it may sound, compared to bra shopping, or shaving for the first time, I remember moving from the so-called baby spoon, to the bigger, or, adult spoon. Maybe it's because I take eating my cereal seriously. I actually have cereal withdraw if I've gone an entire day without that bowl of carb-filled goodness. Lately, I try to make eggs several mornings a week, but by bedtime, I have to have a bowl of cereal or else I lie in bed thinking about it. From one cereal eater to another, let's just agree that the spoon is important.

These moments, like Isabella requesting the bigger spoon, catch me off guard. I stop for a moment and see how much and how quickly she is growing, and it's just plain scary. She told me she has a wiggly tooth, and later, as I told Walter about it, my eyes welled with tears. Sometimes, as we are about to embark on first grade, and lost teeth, and (soon) full fledged independent reading, I want to hit a pause button. I feel like there are things I already want to do over again, or situations I wish I'd handled differently. I'll always strive to be a better parent and I daily strive to make her feel safe, and loved, and cherished. I can't say I always make her happy, because we are definitely in a stage where by the end of the day, I feel I've lost more points than I've gained, but I know she has fun every single day, whether she wants to admit to it or not.

Part One of our vacation, mostly in pictures.

On the way to Lake Keuka, we stopped in Salamanca, which is part of the Seneca Reservation, and visited the Rail Museum.

Heading to the water for the first time:

As Walter read to them tonight, Isaac fell asleep in Isabella's arms, instead of my own. So, in the midst of melt-downs about life's unfairness, or emotions that run high just because she's six, and it seems being six is quite challenging, I remember that her heart is full of goodness and kindness.

This picture is probably making my mom freak out. Don't worry, Walter is holding on to the kayak and the front of the kayak is still on land.

People with g-tubes and ear tubes are not allowed in lake water (not that Isaac would actually go in water voluntarily anyway) due to the bacteria in the water. He was happy to remain on shore.

Before going to Bully Hill Winery for lunch, we were able to stop at Sommerville Pottery, where I was very excited to replace one of my favorite mugs that I purchased from them three years ago (unfortunately, that mug fell from the kitchen cabinet and broke). We had a wonderful visit at their shop, and after asking, they were happy to give us a full fledged demonstration of using the potter's wheel.

Bully Hill Winery: 

First time in a kayak: 

 Mini golf in a corn field, and completely to ourselves. This was perfect for Isaac who chose to stay on one green for a significant amount of time. I'm not sure how his lack of mini golf etiquette would have worked out otherwise.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mr. Go Home

We are on vacation this week. The opportunity arose unexpectedly and thankfully, we were able to pull together friends and family to help take care of Stella and the chickens. 

Isaac has become increasingly attached to our home and his daily routine. He is a creature of habit and also pays close attention to detail. In his mind, everything has an order in which it should be completed and every group of toys has an order in which they all stand, and if, say, Walter, is not aware of this order, things get ugly. We encourage him to be flexible and talk him through many situations while stressing that, for example, if his toy on his high chair tray is moved out of its very important spot, life will go on. We try to be respectful of the order he has in his head while still easing him into flexibility. A couple of his therapists have asked if he has been diagnosed with OCD--he has not, and though many children with 9pminus do have OCD, we are hesitant to think of his habits at this point as anything other than his nature or related to his challenge with sensory processing disorder. We'll see how things play out over the next few years. 

We became aware of his attachment to our home, when his verbal capacity increased about six weeks ago to the point that he was able to say, "go home". Since then, if we are away from our house for too long, he does not tire of repeating, "go home" until we finally, go home. Knowing this, we were a little concerned about how he would respond to being away from our home for several days. He has done quite well, but we've heard the phrase, go home about three hundred times since we got to the lake house. We lovingly call him, Mr. Go Home.  

First sunflower to bloom

Our front garden space looks a bit like a jungle, but I like it that way. I'll never have a perfectly manicured lawn because that just isn't me. 

Doesn't he look so darn happy? This is quite a refreshing change from what is mood used to be.

Isaac is really interested in superheroes. He walks around saying, "Me a Hum". Somewhere along the way we discovered that his word for Superhero is, Hum (pronounced with a very guttural 'h'). We have no idea why, or how he came up with this, but we go with it and are glad we at least know what he is talking about.

Our superhero after a bath. Baths = torture for this superhero.

There is no doubt in my mind that Isaac will be extremely happy to arrive back at home, but for now, we are enjoying family time at a lake house on Lake Keuka in New York. Oddly enough, this is where I began my blog three years ago. At the time, we were in the midst of Isaac's hours and hours of relentless screaming, and we were also in the throes of determining what was ahead in regards to his craniosynostosis. I remember one night on that trip, when my dad strapped Isaac to his front in the Beco, and walked with him until he fell asleep. On Sunday, as we watched Isaac walk around the yard of the lake house, Walter said, "what a difference three years makes for this little man." Indeed, time, has made all the difference.