Sumer…Summer…Summertime! Just some tidbits from the past week :)
Acorn's final few days of special ed preschool were this week. We've had lots to organize, including making sure he'll have access to his communication device through the summer - a recent trial shows that while he uses PECS at school willingly, he flat out refuses to use the pictures at home. I guess the fact that he uses them at school is a testament to the communication difficulties he's had with them all year - as soon as they gave him something that they actually wanted him to use, he took off in telling them his needs.
I've been working with several others on a Pagan set of PECS images. I'll have to figure out where we put them on Acorn's device, but they will make having even a basic discussion with him about Sabbats and altars much more useful.
After last year's experience, we're skipping ESY. Knowing how many families fight for their summer hours, it makes me a little skittish about the whole thing, but it's just not a good setup for Acorn. It's a short day, and only a couple days a week. Instead he can hang out at daycare (who is really geeked about using his communication device), and play in the sprinklers and make friends.
Leaf is finally walking, so we're suddenly finding that she's into everything - she's tall enough to see over the edge of the dining room table, so not even the table is a safe place to put things.
And while we're again missing what I'm told is an awesome local Pagan festival this weekend, we're just not in a position to swing it with Leaf's gear this year. Maybe next year...maybe we can do a day trip next year. It's hard to get out and be a part of the community this way, but we will have plenty of time in future years.
But lately, the time he enters our room is getting earlier and earlier. 6:00 or 6:30 has suddenly morphed into 5:00, 3:30, 1:20. For a while, we didn't do anything about it. In our lazy, half-asleep state, we just let Elliot fall back to sleep in our bed. In a way (again despite the seemingly constant motion), I really like the idea of the three of us being in bed together.
On the other hand, I've always thought the idea of a "family bed" to be somewhat silly. After all, a couple's bed is sort of a sanctuary, and I'd imagine most kids would enjoy having their own special place.
Beyond that, I've noticed that Elliot is starting to be afraid of things: unexpected noises, not knowing where I am in the house, etc. I certainly don't want him to be afraid of his own bed...scared of being in his very own special truck-themed bedroom all by himself.
That's why, when Elliot's face suddenly appeared at my side of the bed (always my side of the bed!) at 1:20 the other morning, I told him it was the middle of the night and not yet morning cuddle time. I took him back to his bed and made sure he was comfortable and cozy before returning to my room.
This is one of the many areas in which what I thought I'd do before Elliot was a reality and what I'm actually doing are somewhat different. Before, co-sleeping was a definite "never." Now, I'll "never say never," but at the same time, I don't want to make it a habit.
After all, it's bad enough sharing a bed with a snorer. I don't need a kicker in there, also!
Karli has been working so hard at her gymnastics skills. We were so excited when her dance teacher decided she could do a tumbling pass the beginning of the jazz routine! This upcoming dance year Karli wants to try out for competition dance, but I’m still a little torn. I mean I want her to do competition dance and have the experience, but in 3 years when she enters into 7th grade she really wants to cheer for the junior high and try out for their competitive cheer team. At that point you can’t really do both – dance and cheer. Honestly though it’s hard to know when you are almost 9 years old what you might want to do throughout junior high and high school. So we are just going to take it one year at a time and see what happens. Hopefully at some point she will be a lot better at one or the other and we will know that it is what she is meant to do.
"Thanks," I reply, stifling a giggle at Elliot's praise of my attempts to play his toy saxophone. While out of context and kind of funny, his comments make me happy. That's because Elliot is repeating what he's hearing each week from his instructor at swim lessons...where he's been doing surprisingly well!
I say "surprisingly" based on past pool attempts, like the "playtime for polliwog" class he took in the winter. While the other polliwogs cavorted, Elliot spent most of his time clinging to me on the side of the pool. So, it was with trepidation that I signed him up for "fish 1" after a few private lessons to get him more in the swing of things.
What a difference those individual lessons -- or a little bit of time -- have made! Elliot eagerly takes his turn making scooper arms, kicking and blowing bubbles. When it's not his turn, he sits on the side of the pool wiggling his feet and looking absolutely adorable in his green goggles and bathing suit, his wet hair sticking up on one side. I wave at him from across the pool and my baby waves back, a proud smile on his face.
He should be proud. He's gone from barely getting into the water to completely submerging his face. He allows the teacher to place her hand under his chin while he kicks to the count of 10 in a back float position. And when it's the other kid's turn (in this group class that ended up with only two kids!), Elliot helps with the counting.
I couldn't be happier with Elliot's progress in the pool. After all, swimming is such an important life skill. And, almost as important, playing in the pool is a lot of fun.