Monday, December 20, 2010

"I peed on my forehead!!"

Welcome back all:-)  Wow - it's been a while, busy and just decided to take a break.  Thanks for being patient with me/us.  I have had so many things to write about - just didn't do it.  Today tops them all - thus the title.  You'll have to wait on that one.......:-)

We are dealing with major issues regarding pre-school.  Let me start with -Sam does fine once he is there and I have no doubt he is learning.  The issue is the time inbetween - he is constantly saying he is not going to go to school; he is not going to ride the bus, etc.  One issue is he thinks no one wants to play with him - I was reading a 'social story' to him about how to ask others to play and what to do if they turn you down.  He became very sad and said no one wants to play with him.  I talked with his teacher and she informed me that (no surprise here) he is in 'control' telling them what to play with/how to play with it and when they are done.  He does this at home - constantly!!  Then he tells them it's time to go to another 'center' - they aren't ready to go or don't want to go to the one he wants to go to.  He then takes that as them not wanting to play with him.  So now we know how to approach that..... 

HOWEVER - we also have the eating issue.  I got a phone call from the school nurse last week saying he had puked.  I talked to him on the phone - and he told me his teacher wanted him to try the foods they were having that day and after a little coaxing - he did - and then puked.  He does this - he will either gag or actually puke if he does not like something he has tried.  I talked to the nurse again and could hear him laughing in the background - we both decided he was not sick and it was just a Sam'ism.  SERIOUS sensory issues with food/taste/smell/ - today he saw a scene in a movie where a kid gets his tongue stuck to a frozen pole - he had to cover his eyes as he was having a gag-reflex from this - WHAAAA?????  But he was so into the scene he would cover his eyes/watch it/cover his eyes/watch it and so on.  He made it through:-)

OK - for some reason most of the time daddy or I have to go with him when he goes to the bathroom.  Usually it's because it's dark - today he had to go #2 and "mommy mommy hurry up come with me come with me......" - so I go (interruped for the umpteenth time trying to get things done) and sit up on the counter and wait.  Wow it was stinky - he sits backwards on the stool and often covers his face with his t-shirt - silly boy.  He had to push so hard he couldn't cover his face and was leaning thing I know (as I'm thinking 'Hurry up - are you just dinking around or are you doing your business???') he pops up and says - "I just peed on my forehead" - it took me a second - but sure enough - I laughed soooo hard I couldn't even respond!  He had the look of shock and then of course my laughter started his laughter and it was a great and stinky potty time:-)!!  Oh the joys of motherhood - for real.  I LOVE my kids (and my hubby:-))

Merry Christmas - and I vow to stick to my writing once again -    

Monday, November 8, 2010

New Day, Different Issues

Glorious fall day - supposed to be 75 degrees!!  Not for long - so we'll take it!  Well - so much for the polite little gentleman - we're back to BOSSY 'have it my way' Sam.  Here's Sam:  NO, come back up to the top of the stairs (where we get Nasya from daycare) you have to be behind me!!!!!  NOW!  I tell him 'NO' follow directions and get down here now - the battle ensues and it's obvious he's not giving in and I'm tried of people staring and I'm tired of being there ten times longer than a typical parent!!!  I go up - he leads and then he's angry because I open the door - typical, I should have known.  Then he's angry because I don't unlock his car door quick enough.  Then I take off too soon before he's 'settled' in his seat to HIS satisfaction - once again - typical, just getting impatient and beyond by now. 

His jackets/shirts have to be buttoned/zipped ALL the way EVERY time.  His pants have to hook a certain way- he won't always wear pants that button.  He talks  non stop and when I'm tired - we don't mix well.  I'm tired because HE is not sleeping well - again.  Two + weeks now.  Just got done being sick and don't want to go down that road again......not much I can do about 'rest' now that he really doesn't nap.  TRYING to get him to have 'relaxation' time each day - easier said than done. 

Well, I've ordered an X-lg hammock - the kind you can't flip out of (I hope).  I plan to hook this under his loft bed and HOPE to GOD (thanks in advance!!!) that he'll sleep in it and learn to swing/rock himself back to sleep ~ WITHOUT mommy or daddy having to wake, pick him up and carry him out to our rockers every time!!  This would be a miracle, a dream come true and absolutely fantastic!!!  My husband has another idea - similar but I'm not sure about it since he said it wouldn't swing.  This is my last idea to help our situation - if anyone reading this is an expert and can help us - PLEASE do!!

FYI - the ticket thing worked this morning - three more to go.  As with everything else - this might only work for a week or a month and then we're back to square one - so for now I am happy in the moment.  That is all I can expect.  Ciao!~

Sunday, November 7, 2010

AH, a Big Thank You!

A BIG thank you to all my friends and family who allowed me to spill my heart out last blog - and still love me.  If you took it personally - maybe look at why - or look at it from my motherly perspective and if it were your life:-)  Things/issues tend to pile up and I needed to share ~ now I digress:-)

We had the kids pictures taken yesterday and I have to say - Sam was a perfect gentleman!!  Even one of the photographers said how sweet and polite he was - he did GREAT!!!!!  Nasya was the story of the morning - she petered out quite quickly.  OH well - we got a few good shots. 

Can't wait - my hubby and I are receiving a much needed small get-a-way next weekend - we have been 'gifted' time and fortunately have two people to help with the kids while we are away.  We basically have two days and a morning to do what we wish!!  We'll just have to pay for food and whatever we decide to do - for all I care we could just stay in the nice home we will be 'living' in for 36 hours!!  Swim, hot tub-it, sleep, eat, go for walks - we don't really have the money this week to spend so I'm sure that's what we'll be doing.  YAY. 

Getting on the bus, going to school, going to OT on Fridays, etc. - have not been easy.  Sam is not wanting to go for some reason.  When we were at OT this past Friday - she mentioned, "Oh, he's not liking the big transitions?!"  Think thats it!  Light bulb flashing......So, the therapist immediately gave us an envelope/picture reward system and we'll see if it works come tomorrow morning.  PLEASE!!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

To Tell the Truth, or To NOT Tell the Truth...That is the Question!

When I started this blog, I knew there were risks.  First off, it is online - need I say more?  Secondly, my intentions are never to offend, however, to tell the truth - never in a hurtful manner.  And thirdly - I knew that some might have a difficult time looking past the AS and what I write about and still seeing our beautiful boy for who he is - not a monster.  The third risk is the one I really struggle with - he is my son - God's perfect creation.   

I could spend my time right now telling you how very difficult the last couple weeks have been and what we've been through (or how last night was AWFUL and this morning Sam screamed and threw a fit even out by the bus - I ended up having to wake Sya (on her birthday) and rush getting her ready so I could get Sam to school) - but I am not going to.   I am going to veer off track for this one.......if you are overly sensitive and tend to take things personal, let me recommend you not read any further.  If you are able to consider others and be open minded, and know that these words are coming from care/concern - please continue:-).

I need a place where I can be honest and let my true feelings out - I have no where to do so.  I have found that this blog may not have been such a great idea.  I feel I have done my son a disservice by writing about our life.  I haven not created a 'safe' environment or a better social life for him by writing this blog.  Some are able to embrace him and get to know him more.  Others have made no effort really to be a bigger part of his/our life.  "We don't want our kids to be influenced by his behavior," "We don't want to deal with him, it's too stressful," He's so obnoxious, we just won't go over there...," "You should have seen the tantrum last time we saw him, it's riduculous those parents can't control him!  We don't want our kids doing that."  ETC.  Just a few thoughts I'm sure some people have had.  

Let me say.....if anyone has said or thought any of these things, they do not know Sam's TRUE self and the reality.  ALL children go through phases; ALL children have behavior issues and are NOT perfect; ALL children make bad choices at one time or another and NOT because of someone else's 'bad' is NOT always someone elses fault for your child's bad choice - it is a natural way of life.  Adults AND children can learn from any circumstance IF the parents choose to TEACH their child about 'differences' and compassion ~ Not judging and RUNNING from 'differences'.  No, I am not shouting with my capitalizations......I am just making a point.  I do not want to sound defensive - but I am defending my son.  I am defending his 'difference' from others - I thank GOD for how amazing and funny and intelligent Sam is.  Yes, we have difficulties - yes it is stressful at times - I thank God he gave Sam to us and not to parents that would hide him and push others away because they are ashamed or don't want to deal.  

We go to functions - family or not - and it is so easy for everyone to blame him for everything.  It is so disheartening and makes me so angry.  I watch as other kids 'taunt' him and then he reacts (as ANY kid would do) and he is the one to get yelled at or corrected.  I have decided to not allow this to go by anymore - I will speak up in his defense and I pray that God helps me choose my words wisely.  The last thing I want is to upset anyone - however, I do not want these feelings to fester and I just want to educate people from our persepctive and get them to think.  If you have been offended or took these things personally - maybe ask why? or literally try to put yourself in our shoes......try.

All of this frustration to say - get out of your comfort zone - get to know 'how' to be with a unique little man without being reserved/hesitant/judgemental/worried about 'bad' influences ETC - he's 4 - he's human - he is God's creation.  K - now I need to find some time to take a nap......and maybe find a 'happy' pill:-)      

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

"Back to Life, Back to Reality, Back to Life.....However Do Ya...."

Yes my 80's (early 90's:-))friends - it is that song....could have titled it "Back From Rock Bottom," "It Was Bound to Happen," etc.   WOWsers!  About a month ago I was dealing with bronchitis (before that was sick tooooo) then last week, after my kids and hubby had a yucky 'bug' for 12-24 hrs, I got it.  Tuesday was the day it all began - no big deal, I handle this, it will all be over early Wednesday.  It wasn't.  And then it still wasn't. 

I did not see daylight from Tuesday eve until Thursday 3:45pm when my hubby forced me to go to the doctor.  As you can imagine, I hadn't showered let alone comb my hair!  I mustered all my strength to stand in the shower, throw my hair up, get dressed and go for a ride.  WOW it was bright - now I know why they gave the miners in Chile such nice sunglasses!  Anyway, after one and a half hours at the doctor - I was told my immune system was shot - DUH - Ya think??  After four years of crappy sleep and now was bound to happen.

I told him that from the start - I didn't think it was anything else but I understand they have to rule out other things.  So - got a lovely shot in the rear (steriods:-)) and some mega anti-biotics to clear up any remaining bronchial infections.  It is now five days since all the drug interactions and I feel pretty well close to normal.  YAY!!  I HAVE to mention Big Daddy here - he was amazing and I (and the children) were so blessed that he could take time off to be here - because I was soooooo out of it!!  He sacrificed a lot at work - but no one else could have filled his HUGE shoes - did I say HUGE??:-)

NOW - to just figure out a way to get GREAT sleep and keep on top of my health - would be great!!

More the NEXT blog.....

Thursday, October 14, 2010

'Stupid Mommy!!!'

Ugh.  Thats the only word I can type that describes the last week.  Sleep - not great at all.  First off let me start with the fact that this family has been dealing with one sickness after another - a week of high-temp flu; two+weeks of sinus infec. & bronchitis - I'm still struggling; and now my little Dolly threw up three times last night - nothing since 7:30pm so it's been 12 hours - hope it lasts!!!  

So, on top of the sickness we deal with Sam and sleep.  Daddy's been gone all week so I'm on my own.  Two nights ago - Sam woke up around 2:45 yelling for me so I ran in his room.  Remember he is in a loft bed - I cannot just pick him up, so he's sitting up yelling/crying and I can tell he has no idea what is going on.  In the meantime he's yelling 'stupid mommy' over and over, he threw his pillow at me and was going to throw his sippy at me until I grabbed it first.  So, I try to calm him and ask if he wants to rock.  He tells me not to talk and starts pounding the wall, our bedroom wall.  Ironic since I almost hung our wedding photos back up that same day - thinking his 'fits' might be subsiding during the night.  SO glad I ran out of time:-)  This went on for quite a while and finally I convinced him to come down and rock - my remaining calm I think is what totally  helped - while it's not easy listening to horrible things being said about you and things being thrown at you - I did realize he he had no idea what what going on.  

We rocked and it still was stressful - NOT fast enough no matter what I did.  It had been some time since we'd gone through this in such a horrible way.  Granted, on a daily basis we never do it right but he has not had his angry kicking fits because of this - until lately.  After about 30+ minutes of this I finally calmed him down, he went potty and then he had to sit at the table and drink a little juice.  By this time, I'm not going to fight.  So, we sat at the table quietly until he looked like he was going to fall asleep and I convinced him to get back in bed.  So he did and so did I.  OH, then both kids decided it would be fun to wake up at 6:45.  'Morning mommy!!!'

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Hilarious Anger

Okay - so we went to the farm briefly today and on the way home Sam was VERY naughty and would not listen (not to mention his sister was copying everything he was doing) - so I pulled over for a 'time out' and told him if he did not follow directions the rest of the way home we would take away his Iron Man birthday present.  Well, he was still naughty kicking my seat, yelling, being out right obnoxious!!! 

We got home and I immediately went in, took his Iron Man set and put it in the closet.  He came in and I did not say a word - he went directly to where his Iron Man 'WAS' and it was silent.....until - (Wait - I have to tell you I got him a little voice recorder  - he LOVES to listen to himself and has a blast recording himself over and over and over and over.... OKAY now for the remainder of the story).  It was silent until I heard him say sobbingly, "They took my Iron Man forever!" and then I heard it repeat on the recorder.  Then he yelled like he was mad and then played the recording again - and he started laughing (so did I as I was feeding Nasya in the kitchen).  Then he yelled a little more and a little longer and played the recording - laughing even harder - so was I!!  Then - (remember he is a FOUR year old Anderson BOY) he started saying, "Daddy farty pants, Mommy farty pants, Nasya  farty pants" and then playing the recording.........What I thought was going to be AWFUL to deal with turned out to be hilarious!!!  I am so glad he found a way to deal with it without even knowing it - PRAISE GOD!!!!!  We get sooo tired of battles - when we are pleasantly surprised - it is wonderful. 

"Backfired....shock!" and "POOP"

Well - overall a GREAT birthday for Sam J. and Nasya toooo:-)  The Iron Man red/yellow cupcakes and HIS special 'big' boy cake - backfired!!!  I was so proud of my 'creation' since no one carries Iron Man cake decor - - then he says, "no I don't like them - there's no Iron Man!"  He only blew out his candles and that was that - whatever!  Then, I took his IM banner and cut off the Iron Man pics (we don't want 'Happy Birthday' on his wall all year!) and hung them up on his closet doors and told him to come look - you got it - backfired!!  He says, "It's ugly, I don't like it, put it back on the other thing!  It looks horrible!"  Again, whatever.  Otherwise - he got a trampoline (a sensory thing that we requested!), an Iron Man figurine with things to shoot, tool "work station" he calls it and you better not touch it, etc.  He is getting VERY bad a hoarding 'HIS' things - painstakingly puting them up high and out of reach from Sya in particular and sometimes us.  I was getting ready for company for his party (MORE on that later....) and cleared off his clutter from the fireplace shelf.  He woke from his nap and that was the first thing he noticed and I saw a meltdown coming on so I put everything back - I just didn't have time to deal!!!

K - so the party itself.  We had been smelling stinky drains for a few months now - at least.  We'd been using Draino, the little ball things that you put down a disposal, and I noticed nothing was working!!!  Well - the day of ALL days - the drains downstairs were backing up and NOT going down one bit!  The utility sink down there had been filling up half way whenever I did laundry but thats it (DUH something was obviously wrong - but good 'ole Big Daddy ALWAYS says, 'don't worry about it' or 'it will be fine.'  So I usually take matters into my own hands and get ready for a fight ('discussion') - this time I did not. 

Happy Birthday Sam - the house smells like POOP - you're favorite word!!!!!  Yes - Don bought some super powered drain stuff at Ace and WOWOWOWOW I have never smelled such horrible smells in my life - the carbon monoxide detector would not stop going off - we NEEDED to get out of here - but wait......WE HAD A PARTY!!!!  We ended up packing un-frosted cupcakes, plates, spoons, ice cream, frosting, ETC and having the party at Don's parents house - it all worked out but we had to come back home to the POOP smell - wasn't near as bad - but we survived and the kitties are still alive and happy. 

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Iron Man Sam's gonna be FOUR

Okay - so I'm typing in Iron Man deep red:-)  Yes - another obsession - for several months now!!!  He wants to be IM for Halloween - I have the costume and he WILL not know that until the DAY OF Halloween!!!!!  He would wear it 24/7 and good luck having it any other way.  So, for his birthday in two days - I got an IM banner, table cover and whistle blowers.....I am also going to make him a 'little' red cake and red velvet cupcakes with yellow frosting - Iron Man enough for me since NO ONE had cake toppers!!  The family will be thrilled they didn't have b-day hats:-)

So, we've all been sick - again.  This time - Sya had been coughing for quite some time and finally took her in last Saturday (maybe I told you this) got an antibiotic blah blah blah.  Sam's been coughing - not as bad as us......I started getting a sore throat, coughing, etc. beginning of the week and the last two nights have NOT slept THIS TIME because of couging ALL night - the hard, ouchie kind of cough.  I decided to go to the doctor - called Thursday to try to get in Friday afternoon and they said they were full but had an opening in 45 minutes - YAY Don was able to come home so I could go.  Glad I did - infection and bronchitis:-(  No wonder the coughing is ssoooo bad - had to get a shot and anitbiotics/cough meds so I can hopefully sleep a little tonight.  Poor hubby had to sleep on the couch last night since he had a presentation today in Lincoln.  He's tired.  We're all tired. 

Went to pick up Sya this morning and saw her at the end of a fairly long hall way - she turned and saw me and soooo happily & joyfully was yelling "MOMMY MOMMY MOMMY MOMMY" all the way as the skipped and ran to me:-)  MADE my day to say the least - all the workers were smiling and laughing at how cute this was!!!  I hope every parent can experience this - she is my little dolly doo-doo's!! 

Well - removed Sam's ceiling fan tonight to put in a regular light and hang his swing.  LOVES the swing - but it is not serving it's FULL purpose YET.  Not sure it will.  Part of his 'rocking' issue I think is one of us holding him tight where a swing will not do that.  Him and Nasya are having a blast swinging eachother - that is when he is not being naughty to her for being in it.  What a temper and it takes NO time for him to do something to her before we can intervene. 

BUS - he has been GREAT getting off the bus this week, granted he has not been feeling well and missed a day of preschool.  Next week will tell.  While he was sick he figured out he did NOT have to actually get on the bus in the morning - so the next day he got ready (reluctantly) and when the bus pulled up, he ran off and REFUSED to get on.  The bus can only wait a couple minutes and then leaves.  So, daddy ended up taking him in his new work car and now we have to think of consequences for THAT if it continues.  He was fine today since they got to tour firetrucks and ambulances - he surely didn't want to miss that!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Dates with My Hunky

Yay - Sam and I had TWO dates this past week.  Thursday he had no preschool and Sya went to daycare for 3 hours so we went to the John Deere implement dealer.  We walked the whole lot looking at each and every tractor, combine, and 'articulated' tractor.  It was so sweet - he was in heaven.  We then tackled going into the store.  Of course he wanted everything and I told him we'd have to sell the house and live on the street - he didn't seem to mind.  Eventually I was able to talk him in to a $14.00 JD combine set.  Whew!!!!!  That was lucky - I was a little disappointed that none of the JD guys didn't oogle him since they are his heroes......oh well.  I'm sure they were too 'busy'.  

Since he was such a good boy and followed directions - I took him to the gas station where he loves to pick out a 'cool' sucker or candy of some sort.  Of course, he had to get something for his sissy too......awwwwww.

Sunday - since we had NOOOOOO sleep - attempted to get a few snoozes here and there on the couch, floor or where ever while the kids played and jumped on us.  Sam has a tendency to romp all over daddy all the time - poor guy, sort of.  He brings it on himself - but now that he's soooo tired along with me - it's not so enjoyable.  I decided to get Sam out of the house and let daddy I took him to Pier Park to watch the skaters - he talks often of skateboards (prob. since they come in the happy meals...???).  We get there - and he doesn't even notice them - he notices the lake and wants to walk around it - fine with me.  It was a fun - relaxing time for both of us - lots of questions of course but worth it:-)  We then played on the playground and came home.  The time spent alone with him or Nasya is priceless - considering there is sooooo much to deal with then they are together - it is VERY good for both of them to have their own time - whether at school, daycare or with mommy or daddy - they NEED it.  Tomorrow and Wednesday is Nasya and mommy's turn - will probably go for a walk and do some 'learning' - I think she is a little behind with talking - and WAAAY advance in motor skills - hello - peddaling her trike at 1 1/2 and is soooo good with the  ball/frisbee and anything else active! 

My Hiney Sounds Like a Marching Band!!!

Yeah - the latest comment from beloved Samuel while having 'toots' on the potty......just happened to be the day before the biggest parade in the state.  Silly boy.  He's really been into rhythms - with ANYTHING!  Kind of cool.....

K - so for reality.  Still no sleep.  NO SLEEP!!!  Daddy was finally here three nights in a row and has actively been a part of this VERY frustrating problem.  Last night - he finally was frustrated enough to say, "If this continues, I'm getting rid of the rocking recliners!!"  I truly think that is the ONLY way to get around this - I only wonder what Sam would think of to replace the 'needed?' behavior.  We did finally get the swing (his b-day present early...) - but need to find the proper place to hang it.  Under the bed is not working for several reasons.  Need to replace his ceiling fan with a reg. light - then there will be room to hang from his ceiling.  AND he will not be able to sit up on his bed and in a 'rage' mess with the fan - I'm waiting for it to come crashing down!! 

I am sooooo truly fed up with this nightly routine!!  Last night was first Nasya (who has a BAD sinus infection) then Sam several times in a row.  Granted, his lips were sooooo sore - we have been telling him to STOP licking/chewing and sucking on them - we could tell they were getting a little sore before he went to bed but he woke up bawling so I put some salve on them.  Then he was coughing/sneezing, etc. - we all have allergies and his are starting to act up.  So - between midnight and 2:00am - we were up one after the other - I am always requested to rock and rock and rock and then daddy has to put him back in bed.  I cannot reach to lift him up there - and he is too out of it to climb back up.  Saturday night was WORSE - yep, no church as we only got a couple hours of sleep AGAIN!!!!  SO incredibly frustrating and maddening.  I again have a list of things I WANTED to get done this AM while I have no kids for 2 1/2 hours - but I decided to blog - too tired to run errands and get my rear downstairs to go through stuff.  Am wanting to MEGA clean out the office and tubs and tubs of STUFF - GET RID OF as much as possible - BUT I need energy and a few hours to do this:-(((((   I cannot get started in 30 minutes - quit and come back - I do MUCH better when I can start and dive in completely - NOT an easy task around here.  Hopefully Thursday, which is the next time I have a couple hours to myself - praying for GREAT nights sleep at least Tues/Wed. night.......

Wow, that was a big paragraph:-).  My little Nasya is such a dolly - she LOVES her brother soooo much.  They are playing sooo well together - much of the time.  She was swinging him in his new swing and laughing so hard.....he loves her so much as well, but when they are playing, he will all of a sudden start yelling in her face or slapping her face or elsewhere thinking it's 'funny' and she's going to think it's funny.  Well, as you can imagine it turns into her crying and crying.  I hope someday he 'gets' the idea that other's do NOT like to be hit and yelled at in the face. 

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Can we say...Sleep Deprived once again!!

Well - once again I should be in bed since I'm so behind in sleep but I haven't blogged in a LONG time!  Sam is again waking several times in the night to be rocked AND telling us he is not going back to bed - yeah RIGHT!!  Ultimatums do not work for this kid - we are constantly thinking of ways to convince him he NEEDS to go to bed.  We usually 'use' his pediatrician as a crutch - telling him 'Dr. ***' says he needs to go to bed so he will wake up healthy; or he needs to go to sleep so he can be a smart Engineer for John Deere; etc.  But we have to get past the yelling demands of 'Stop talking!!  Don't talk!!  Be quiet!!!!' during the rocking before we can 'convince.'   

Got his swing today - but haven't done anything with it yet - going to need daddy to help put it up somewhere.  TBD.

I usually end up eating my 'breakfast' at 3:00AM since I probably won't get to eat in the 'morning' until 9 or after....I'm usually starving while rocking kids/getting them ready/and dealing with Sam's 'demands' in the early hours.

SO incredibly frustrated for so many sleepless reasons -
1)The weather is soooo difficult to enjoy when you are dragging and out of it!  Had a major headache - for weeks - finally subsided somewhat today and then the lower right back REALLY about the BEST you can be as a mom and wife! 
2)I have had sooo many plans/agenda's/lists I've wanted to get accomplished - sooooooo not possible when I am dragging and miserable and just trying to make it through the day 'successfully' with the kiddos!! 
3)NOT able to be the MOMMY and WIFEY I desire to be - I feel so behind and unsuccessful just because I am NOT in control of how much sleep I get - sooooo frustrating.  I know I shouldn't dwell on it - but it is impossible!

ON THE BRIGHT SIDE:  yesterday (Wednesday) Nasya kept saying 'pawhy, pawhy, pawhy' - potty!!  SO - in a cute little nutshell - she has pottied three times in the last 24 hours in the froggy potty!!!!!  I asked her if she was going to be potty trained by Christmas - she told me YES!!  I'll believe it when I see it.  After Sam's training TWO-YEAR episode - I don't get my hopes up.  None-the-less - YAYAYAYAYAY - she is getting sooo big!!!

One more thing - they are playing together sooooo well - yes still episodes but MUCH better than before - YAY!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Oh yeah.......

I forgot to mention the other stipulations Sam put on me during the bedtime fiasco.  If I talked during rocking we had to start over.  When we started over, he said I couldn't talk, move my hands, touch his hair, blink, etc.  This is all too common and frustrating.  Kind of like the statues if you read previously.  Oh boy, and if we don't do these things - guess what.......?  Yep, battle.

Going down stairs, he slides his hands down the rails all the way to the end and around the corner until the rail stops; he has to button/zip his shirts & jackets all the way up; the zippers on his pants have to go all the way up; we have to count to five when he brushes his teeth; and the list goes on.    

Good night.

Frisbee and God

I mentioned in an earlier blog about Sam's progress with pretending.  One thing I forgot to mention was the lack of fully understanding 'pretend'.  He has been obsessed with Iron Man - wearing his rainboots, underwear, t-shirt and gloves - VERY manly!!  Much of the time we have to call him Iron Man or he gets frustrated - anyway, when he is pretending to be IM he is full-on with punches, stomping and being rough with us and his sister.  That is one example - not realizing that pretend means just that - you do NOT actually do the hurtful things, etc.

Nasya, Sam and I were tossing the frisbee a couple nights ago - it was GREAT!!   For most of Sams young life - he would not reciprocate playing catch, kickball, frisbee, etc.  He would take off and run with whatever the object was and usually want you to chase him.  NOW - he gets it every now and then!!  We played with the frisbee for quite a while - now he just blames everything on the other person - even when he's throwing into the street - oh well, there will never be perfection:-). 

GOD:  Our lovely and thoughtful neighbor offered to watch the kids for a bit tonight while I got out (to get groceries:-)) - she had never watched the kids before so I was planning on a quick trip - she told me to enjoy and NOT rush.  So I get to dreaded Wallyworld and start trudging through the aisles.  I'm 2/3 of the way done and I see a wonderful young lady that I hadn't talked to in a long time - she had just sent us an unexpected card yesterday - UMMMM a God thing??  Yes.  I needed that - and I/we definitely need MORE God!!  There are plans for us.....

So - I get home at 8:15 - and am in tears by 9:15.  WOW - bed time was ROUGH.  Poor Nasya - she really has learned how to live with/deal with Sam much of the time.  It was all ready past her bed time and Sam was insisting that HE go to bed first but wanted to rock-a-bye.  So - I attempted to rock both of them and kept trying to take him to bed.  He kept yelling - "I didn't say it's time!" or "NO, one more time, one more time."  I cannot put into words the intensity of these situations we have!!  Sya was so tired she needed to go to bed - but when I tried to take Sam to bed - he'd kick, scream, bawl, throw shoes, toys, etc.  Sya would run back to the living room and crawl up on the couch and cover up with my blanket.  This happened three times - I'd just look at Sya and cry as Sam was having his meltdown behind us.  She is such a sweet dolly - and always has to WAIT and tolerate.  It's not fair.  It's almost like she knew she had to wait until her brother chilled out and then she could have her turn with mommy.  So Sam ended up sitting in daddy's chair crying while I put Sya to bed.  I came out and in a complete nutshell - we gave kisses and made up.  It is soooooo frustrating that he does not comprehend OTHER peoples needs/feelings/hurts/etc.  We constantly have to verbalize and describe these things to him......but when he is near 'meltdown' mode there is NO getting through. 

Off to more adventures......night.

Pink Lipstick & MORE Weiner stories!!!

Well, how do you like the PINK??  This is for Lyla the noon busdriver - I ran out to the bus when Sam was being dropped off - Lyla opens the door and says, "Well, he just wiped off my lipstick and I asked him why he did that and he said he wanted to wear it!"  Once again, speechless.  This goes back to 'social issues' and not knowing what is appropriate - REALLY!!??  I tried really hard not to bust out laughing because I could not tell if it made her mad or not......still trying to figure her out.  All I know is Sam and Lyla have power battles everyday - she needs to just let him do everything himself and all will be fine.  Sam does like her - and he often talks about her crazy hair and how she needs to comb it - I just hope he doesn't tell her that!!  She is probably in her late 60's and I think I've given you enough details to figure out her fashion sense:-)  Actually - I asked him later why he wiped off her lipstick and he said he just wanted to 'feel' it - it was sooooo BRIGHT pink I don't blame the guy - he is not used to that  - he's used to mommy wearing 'natural' colors:-)

So - I guess I'll discuss some reality in the middle of my writing today - in other words not so positive.  I am sooo TIRED again - he has been waking around 3:00am (or a few more times....) to ROCK-and wants us to lift him down off his loft bed.  We rock and every time we get up to take him back to bed - "One more time, one more time" and we say LAST time and the battle ensues!  It is maddening!!!  Most people are not 'with it' at that time but he REALLY is NOT with it - he is soooo out of sorts and it takes nothing to start a tantrum/absolute melt-down.  So like I said - maddening!!!  This can go on for an hour - and when big daddy is gone - it is rough to say the least!  So - once again I am lacking sleep - never really got caught up but a few nights of decent sleep was nice.  I guess I just need to skip the 'me' time at 9:30PM and go to bed.  grrRRrRr  OH - and then they both woke up at 6:10AM today - OH HAPPY DAY - OH HAPPY DAY.  I should be getting groceries right now - but I decided to go to therapy instead. 

He has been so impatient, bossy, 'short fused', etc., the last several days.  I continually have to ask him to 'ask nicely' 'say please'', and everything is a battle.  When people ask me 'What are you doing with all your free time now that Sam is in preschool?' - I truly wish they would find a different way to ask that question.  Why?  So I don't want to smack them!!!!  First of all - I am usually soooo tired, it takes me a while to get going enough to get anything done.  Nasya needs me, groceries, PILES of tubs/clothes to sort and get rid of, pictures in tubs since Sya was born  - to sort and put in albums before I forget many of the dates; laundry laundry laundry, change bedding, cook, dog, cats, etc. etc. I digress - remember I am lacking much sleep right now and I probably shouldn't be blogging - but it IS therapy, right!?

OK - for the first weiner story - Sam was pooping yesterday and HAD to have me in there with him.  Well he kept jabbering about his poops and then he says.... "My poopies think my weiner is a water slide!!!"  How funny is that??!!

THEN we are in the kitchen - Sam in his underwear sitting at the table and I hear daddy say, "Hey, where are you going???" as I hear the front door open and slam shut - uh........then daddy laughing hysterically.  Sam went to the top of the steps - whipped it out and peed onto the sidewalk.  Most of our neighbors cannot see well - soooooo....Sam comes in and asks why daddy is laughing.  Daddy fibbed and said Nasya was being funny....after the laughter, consequences.  Boys and their weiners.....sigh.

Monday, September 20, 2010

My weiner wants to rock-a-bye!!!!

Even though my head is pounding and I need to go to bed - I'll write about my babies first:-)  Yeah - so Sam wants to 'rock-a-bye' and I have to go to the bathroom.  He follows me whining and crying and holding his weiner.   So I ask him if he has to go to the bathroom??  NOOOOO I don't have to go!  I asked why he was holding his weiner then??  He said, "Because my weiner wants to rock-a-bye NOW" - really?  He's said sily things like this a couple times this past week (seriously not silly to him - dead serious!!) and I've wanted to say that his weiner can't talk, but I haven't knowing that a mega fit is around the corner.  Tonight I asked - he said, ""MOOOM, it's just pretend.  Rock-a-bye NOOOOOWW!"

Speaking of pretending - nine months ago Sam was sooo literal.  He still is to an extent but he is able to 'pretend' much more than ever.  Nine months ago, a therapist was trying to put a cow in a bathtub and he refused to have the cow in the tub because cow's don't take baths.  This went on for weeks.  That is the mind of an Aperger's individual.  They have to learn to pretend and think outside of the box.  NOW - on his terms of course - he is able to come up with some crazy silly things.  It is still difficult at times - sometimes he is okay being called a nickname and sometimes he is not and will yell "I'M NOT ******** I'm Samuel/or I'm Just a boy!!"  Depends on the day or the hour:-)  Anyway - all this to say he is able to play 'pirate ship' in his outdoor fort, etc.  It is a lot of fun - THANKS to all the people that have been a positive influence in his life and in working with him:-)  PROGRESS!!!!! 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Making good on the potty training.......

Well we finally took Sam bowling:-)  That is something we promised Sam a year ago - when he finally decided to be completely potty trained (which he has been for a while now - except for 'accidents') we would take him bowling.  Nasya had just as much fun - they were very good and had a blast. 

Sam is loving preschool!!!  We had our IEP meeting a week ago - went very well and I had an opportunity to ask several questions.  Sounds like he is a perfect little angel - GO FIGURE!!  Actually, (a word Sam says often....) kids with AS respond VERY well to structure and ridgid schedules - so I really wasnt' worried about this.  The bus has been the BEST choice - it is one of the things that entices him to get dressed/ready - and gives him something to anticipate - it also helps than John the driver is sooo zippy and happy in the morning:-)  God is in control!  K - back to the meeting - SO - my question is WHEN DOES TRANSFERENCE happen?  When will he figure out that what he learns in the classroom - needs to be practiced or 'transferred' to real life???  I know there is not near the structure at home and in reality - and I'm sure things will fall in to place over time.  Patience my dear, patience.

The only 'frustration' that the teacher has seen was when Sam was playing with another little boy and Sam yelled "Hey, you're not sharing!" - well the boy didn't speak English and that was part of the frustration.  So of course the interpreter had to intervene and all was well.  Sam is the one who keeps the class on schedule - he'll say:  "Okay, hurry with snacks because we have to get on the bus!" 

NO sleep the last two nights - Sam has had a fever and body aches (crabbiness of course) but no other symptoms.  Two nights ago daddy was out of town and Sam woke up almost EVERY hour to rock - and good luck getting him to go back to bed, he'd say:  "ONE MORE TIME, ONE MORE TIME!!"  I was soooo tired the next day.......Anyway, he is better now:-) 

Monday, September 13, 2010


Well, it's time once again for the show "Parenthood" - good, well written show and you can't go wrong with Craig T. Nelson.....  I mention this show because one of the story lines has to do with a family that has a middle school son, Max, who has Asperger's. 

Ironically - when we were discovering that our son quite possibly had Asperger Syndrome - this show was in it's first year on air.  EVERYONE we told about Sam and our possible diagnosis - told me to watch this show - if only I had a dollar for each time!:-) 

I only saw the second half of the season, but it seemed the story line was a bit watered down regarding what a family endures with Asperger's.  If you've met one kid with Asperger's, you've only met ONE kid with Asperger's.  NO two are a like - some are high functioning (large vocabulary and use of words/sentences), some are low functioning (little to no vocabulary), some have many sensory issues while some have few, some have no desire for socializing, some lack social skills - like Sam and his lack of understanding personal space and taking turns in conversation.  It is such a complex condition - I think we will always be learning something new.  

Anyway, Tuesday evenings are the night to watch the show if you are interested......who knows what we'll learn about Max this year!?  

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Infuriating - to say the least.....

K - finally going to write it:-)   Wow - Love my hunky little, intensely strong-willed Samuel Joseph!! 

Imagine - the simplest things in life:  puting on a shirt; opening a door; picking something up; walking to another room; getting into bed (priceless!!); waking up; cutting a sandwich; AND SO ON.  Well, these are RARELY simple in our home.  Sometimes these one or two second activities can take 30 minutes and involve a mega tantrum. 

Lately, it seems to be getting worse.  Not sure if it's the OCD or just the AS?.  We put him to bed and we have to stand like a statue while he gets under his covers - all the while him saying "Wait, wait wait wait wait, okay - melt, you can leave now."  The whole time he is watching to see if you move - forget trying to leave he'll have a total fit and start all over again.  The other day we were at 'Nana & Papa's' and were going to leave.  He had said goodbye and we were ready to go (or so I thought!) as I proceeded to pick up bags and go out the door - Sam said "NO I need to say bye to papa on the grass!!...over and over....we had the power struggle with nana and I finally said we just need to let him do it and he'll be fine.  He did and he was.  Then we get outside - time to get in the car......another battle (won't bore you with details).  The CONTROL factor is maddening - but living with this, my husband and I really have to pick our battles or it would be an ALL day thing.  Really exhausting.  

We'll make him a sandwich - and always use a cookie cutter to make shapes.  If we don't ASK what shape he wants and does not like the shape we used - he won't eat it.  Almost everything we do involving him is a battle!!

I just started a book called "No More Meltdowns" by Jed Baker, Ph. D.  So far what I'm getting from it is PICK your battles - which ones do you have time for, which ones are learing experiences for him, etc.  Will tell you more as I learn & have TIME to read:-) 

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Picture Story Practice

First things first.....lets get caught up:-)

Last Friday we had our Wholistic sensory therapy - with none other than Russ the gentle giant horse.  Actually I am concerned that Fridays might be a problem with getting 'horse' time due to them being short staffed,  but we'll try to make it work.  This past Friday they happened to be a bit slow during our time so Kari (his OT) let us go with her to get Russ from the corrals at the farm.  Sam was so excited to take the 'lead' and walk Russ to the therapy corral.  I just enjoyed the walk there and back - getting to see where they keep the animals and even though it wasn't necessarily 'therapy' time - we loved it.  Found out that Russ is 33 yrs. old - most don't live past 30.  That tells me he knows he has a grand purpose and loves helping these kids:-)  He is an amazingly beautiful horse - the OT says she trusts him with her life AND her babies life!! 

Yesterday Sam filled an entire sticker chart and we usually give him a little something for that.  Well, he has been bugging us about some John Deere monster truck set that Don knew about - and thats what he got - they're the 'mini' ones.  Don brought it home and we congratulated him on another FULL sticker reward chart and gave him his small prize.  He says.."Wow, this is a great addition to my collection!"  Okay then Mr. Samuel -glad you're happy:-)

Now for the 'picture story' story......after much frustration with Sam and his not understanding HOW to have a conversation and HOW to wait for someone to listen to him, I decided to read his "Conversation" story before bed.  He listened VERY well and actually wanted to read it again (we also read the LOUD noise story since he doesn't seem to understand HOW to speak quietly) anyway......within the story it talks about letting 'mom and dad say two sentences' while HE listens - before he speaks.  So I decided to practice this......I said, "Okay Sam, it's time to go to bed."  That is sentence number one.  "Let's go rock and give hugs."  That's sentence number two.  Sam says he wants to practice - "Okay mom, it's time to got to bed.  And you can rock-a-bye yourself!"  After laughing hysterically - I told him he did a good job - and yes he got the idea, but I guarantee I'll have to remind him a hundred times before the week is up!!  When we read it again, we practiced listening while the other said a sentence and vice-versa.  This time he said "I like John Deere" and "I like to talk about Iron Man, Tony Stark and Obadiah."  What a silly little man.  He makes me smile.

I still have more to write, however, it is 11:45 PM and after several interruptions it has taken me two hours to write this little ditty!  I actually just heard a thud and Nasya start to cry during the last paragraph - poor girlie, she fell out of her bed so I rocked and calmed her before finishing.  I'll have to write more later this week...........dealing with CONSTANT power struggles and the OCD side of things......IE:  Cracked Corn Dogs, he will not eat!  Try baking one of those and NOT have the bread part actually crack here and there - impossible!!  'Broken' cheese - he will not eat!  And so on......... 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

"Okay, I'll Let You Do That"

Well, as much as we've been stressed with our little man - he NEVER ceases to amaze us with what comes out of his mouth!  Yesterday we were talking and he was telling me something and says "Understand?"  "Mom, do you understand?"  I just looked at him and shook my head and of course said yes.  Then, as usual we are, I should say HE is making a deal.  He was trying to tell me he could have his Juicy Drop Pop (some ridiculously expensive sucker) BEFORE he had lunch and before he got a sticker on a 'circle' (a reward system).  I would then say, "First, you have lunch, THEN you can have your treat."  Back and forth, back and forth this went until he finally says, "Okay, I'll let you do that."  "Oh you will?" I say.  "Yeah mom, I will let you do that."  Well, glad that was settled.

STATE FAIR yesterday:  Can we say SENSORY overload???!!!!  There was no getting through to him or literally getting him to calm down and listen.  Made for a very difficult time - don't get me wrong, overall we had a GREAT time considering.  However, we did get a lot of stares. First it was the Ferris Wheel - that is ALL he could say - forget any other plans we had initially - we knew we needed to get this out of the way or we were leaving!  Then it was the combines, then the camels ($5 PER person) and then it was HOT DOG and Lemonade!!!!!  And on and on and on......I should add, the issue is NOT only his way or the 'highway' (Patrick Swayze...may he rest in peace) mega meltdown time the issue is he is LOUD the whole time - guess what?  There isn't an 'indoor' voice at the fair!!!

 I don't care about the stares, much of the time people are amused but not when they are trying to sit and have a nice meal.  He was yelling for a bun over and over and over - in a building that is very echoey and full of a lot of people.  A bun is an easy thing, right?  Not when the line is a half-mile long and probably $5 just for the bun!!   Things only got worse and so we left as quickly as we could - Sya screaming the WHOLE way to the car with Sam and Daddy following.  Good times.

Today - "Mom, you've got a situation here."  I repeated what I thought I heard.....he says, "Yeah, you're not cooperating with me!"  He wanted me to put Nasya down so he could continue chasing her.  I had just picked her up because she wanted to be I'M not cooperating!!!  OH and I've also created the situation......once again, glad we got that settled.  It's fun having two BIG boss's and one LITTLE BIG boss in the house - hmmmmm, wonder what our future holds??

Title-Crappy Sleep-CORN DOGS!!!!!

Well, for my faithful readers, you can see I'm playing around with my title.  I guess if there is someone out there looking for a blog regarding living/parenting with Asperger's - I want a title to get their attention.  If you have any ideas - do tell:-)

Sleep once again has not been great to say the least.  There was about a few week span where it wasn't too bad - and then - wah-lah!  Sya, now in her toddler bed, has decided that she wants to continually rock and not every go to bed.  So - we are working on that AND Sam has been waking in the middle of the night again because he wants to rock.  HELP!  Hopefully it is due to schedule changes and will subside.  I've all ready gotten an email from Sam's preschool teacher telling me he wants to sleep in circle time and says he's tired.  So - I informed her that Aspie's typically have sleep issues and he is no exception.   We're working on parents there is only so much we can do - we get him to bed on time - doesn't mean he stays there OR stays a sleep. 

FIRST DAY OF PRE-School:  I am going backwards here but I must tell......He was excited -we had been studying the bus picture schedule and he couldn't wait!  THIS is what we were hoping for - and it has not subsided!!  The bus pulls up (the driver is a very ZESTY 90 some year old man - kidding but he IS old, scares me a bit) welcomes Sam aboard and buckles him in.  I was doing fine - and then the bus drove off.......I cried.  I'm getting choked up now, yes, we talked about how I needed the time and HE needed the structure, but that doesn't change the fact that our boy is getting bigger and more independent.  I love my kids!  Sya has enjoyed NOT being chased and annoyed and I have enjoyed NOT having to break up fights and protect Sya:-)  It is cute to say the least - when Sam gets home - they are both so excited to see eachother!!  Sam will say, "HI Cutie Bug Nasya!"  And of course she smiles and runs or goes after him.......

CORN DOGS - Sam has eaten mini corndogs (two) and a big corn dog at the fair - mostly the bread but a few bites of the hot dog itself is HUGE!!!!!!!  I am sooooo excited for this you have NOOOOOOO idea!!!!!!!  I could count on one hand the number of times he has eaten any type of meat since he was born.  I chalk it up to the texture - which is why we've ALWAYS has issues with him and food and gagging.  PROGRESS!  Maybe by the end of the year we'll have a 5 item 'meal' menu!  WOW.....

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Boxing Zurg

What a find! I'm at a very well known discount store.....and found a blow-up boxing thingy of Toy Story/Buzz & Zurg for $5 - it's a little bit taller than Sam. PERFECT I thought for those 'angry' moments Sam has - brought it home and told him that he is to 'box' or 'hit' Zurg when he gets angry, instead of his sister or throwing his toys. Well, it is an amusing toy to say the least. BOTH kids have fun 'tackeling' and punching it - Sya drags it out of her brothers room and rolls around with it. Well, regardless if it is being used for the purpose I intended it for - it was well worth the $5 bill!! Except the time when I turned around to see Sam drag it towards his sister so he could punch it into her.....that was to be expected. Oh well......she has started pummeling him when she doesn't want to be bothered - that was a matter of time and it has arrived.

This afternoon Sam was a little irritable - mouthy day with a lot of hitting mommy & I put him in t/o and he cried and yelled for me to go away (he could see me from where he I moved). I gave him some time and then went in to the room where he was - and between the yells/demands, etc. I finally got out of him 'why' he was in t/o. He said - "I don't know, I'm complicated mom" - I asked if he was complicated or confused......he then said confused. We then discussed the reason and blah blah blah.....all was good - however, he would not give me a kiss until he gave nana one first (he knew thats where we were going in a few minutes...) - I see where I stand.

NO MORE pull-ups!!! He has been 'trained' officially for two weeks now - WHOO HOOOOOOOO - so much for thinking he was potty trained two years ago!!!!!! What do parents know? - all I know is we cannot control what comes out OR what goes in - when and WHERE! He is getting better at aiming - middle of the night pee's are interesting. He may or may not make it in time - thats to be expected OR he may have trouble aiming due to natural male circumstances - in his words "my wiener was too big so I missed" - good one. HOLD IT and aim - oh wait, I know a 39 year old that has troubles with that so I guess it's lifelong problem......I didn't say that:-) Honey, if your reading this - get over it.....LOVE YOU

So much more to write - but I am tired and am going to bed. Just needed to write something......

Sunday, August 22, 2010

More Transitions......

Well, a big week ahead! PreSchool starts Tuesday:-(( :-)) Good times, tough times, and I SURE hope times of getting him up and at'em NICE & CALM!!!

Really, nothing new. Same old stuff. It will be difficult to get him to Wholistic Therapy with Kari - to do his sensory stuff - he LOVES that place; and difficult to get him to Biofeedback - both are in Hastings and with pre-school M-TH mornings - we are really limited. Not sure how we'll do this - but on the other hand - we'll be saving $120 a week until we figure it out. A couple people have said they see a big difference in him - we do to - but we also live with him and see ALL of Sam:-) I honestly can't say which helps him the most.......I just know things are not worse and he enjoys both. Therapy is EXPENSIVE - we pay out of pocket since our deductible is sooooo high. We don't even have it submitted - we'd end up paying more out of pocket - and may or may not reach the deductible. Health care - whatever.

On another note....the other day we were playing 'cars' (more like crashing....) on his car mat - ALL three of us:-) He was naming his cars/trucks and I asked him what he wanted to name the dune buggy. He said "Steve Carrell because it's funny." WHAT??? Then he finds a bee outside on the driveway - dead of course. I said - oh poor thing, I wonder what happened. He said matter of factly, "Mom, it had a crash landing." Quote of the week: "Mom, you're my best girl in the world forever!" Loved it:-)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Transitions and then some....

WOW I haven't blogged in a long time! Shed a few tears this week - our babies are not babies anymore!! First, Sam was giving us fits not wanting to go to bed - he hasn't liked his car bed or his room for a while now and he was also telling us we needed a different house. We weren't going to sell the house, so the next reasonable thing was to get him a big boy bed. Well, he is now sleeping in a loft bed. Yes, up high. The whole time daddy & Sam were puting it together, Sam was saying how awesome his bed was and that daddy was doing it wrong:-) Nothing like bruising the male ego:-).......Daddy did it right and Sam is now very happy in his BIG boy bed. The first night he went up and down the ladder probably 20 times to 'go to the bathroom' - yeah right - he just had to get the newness out of his system - finally fell asleep after 11:00.

Now his little sister......I took the kids to daycare Friday (MUCH needed time to myself since Don had been gone to much...) and went to a few garage sales. Drove by one and saw a nice white wood toddler bed and she took my offer - Nasya does not fit on the changing table anymore and her room is so small I kind of wanted to get the crib out of there as well. So - WHAM BAM - it was done that night!! Was not expecting any of all of a sudden she is not a baby :-( I cried when I put her to bed - and am still adjusting. But her room is cute and I think she is loving it:-)

We went to an awesome birthday party today for Gideon Ramirez - it was a baby pool/sprinkler party - and both kids did GREAT! Especially considering it was during their nap time -

OK - now for the is 10:50pm and Sam is still not asleep......a while ago he called for daddy. Daddy came out of his room laughing pretty hard - which does not usually happen. He said, "I cannot deny that he is my son!!" - reason being: daddy took care of whatever the problem was and then Sam said, "Oh, wait - I forgot something..." turned around on his bed like he was going to climb down - pointed his hiney towards daddy and tooted......laughed and laid back down.

NOW - he is wanting to rock again - bawling and bawling more because of our frustrations - is ELEVEN o'clock!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Mom, is that the Throne......

Well, after a bit of a rough day, Samuel decides to go potty twice within a 5 minute period (supposed to be in bed, go figure) and says to me, pointing - "Mom, is that the throne?" YES somewhere he heard the toilet of all places is also called the throne - porcelain throne. I hesitate ever giving more information than necessary for many reasons - primarily because it ALWAYS prompts MORE questions than you could imagine causing the conversation to be MUCH MUCH longer than I'd like!!

It is 10:20 and he is curled up in the recliner next to me - he kept coming out of his room saying 'I just can't do this....' - meaning go to sleep. So he came out again, I ignored him and he curled up and was asleep within on minute - actually cute!! I was definitely in LALA land thinking he would conk right out at 8:45 - since he did not take a nap. (He did fall asleep on me for about a half hour after a mega fit....) NOOOOOO - dog only got MAYBE 10 minutes of my attention:-(; AND 3 baskets of laundry to fold, behavior sheets to fill out for therapists to figure out 'triggers' - before I forget details, finish listing several items on ebay to pay for therapies, shower, dishes, OH AND RELAX are all the things I still have yet to do and MOST of it will not get done - AGAIN!!!!!!!! I decided to BLOG my frustrations thus taking up more time - OH well - my sanity is worth it:-)

Well, we have had a week or so of GREAT behavior overall! Yes, struggles, but not near what we've experienced in the past. TODAY however, we revered back. SO - I'm trying to find out the cycles - what causes them, weather, circumstances, etc. I want to do a better job of logging but just can't do it all. He has been pooping in the toilet for a 'solid' week now - until today. He was in the middle of an hour long meltdown and pooped in the middle of it - he sat in it for an hour NOT letting me touch him or change him. His fit was all about puting Nasya back to bed - he wanted nothing to do with her - mind you he had just woken up from his VERY brief nap and this can be typical of him when his sleep is 'off.' AN HOUR of things being thrown - yelling - kicking, throwing more, all while Nasya is finding comfort with me - only making things MUCH worse. NOT FUN. Thats how the morning was also - different circumstances -

He woke before me - I heard footsteps and then the toilet lid crash down. I thought YAY he did it on is own FIRST tHING in the morning!!! WOA was I wrong. I came out - he had no pants on and was sitting on his bed - he yelled for me to get him - so I went in. THEN he yelled for me to go away - to the front room. Yeah - never know sometimes! So - I ignored him as he kept telling me to go away - I eventually got out of him that he did NOT go in the toilet - so I immediately ran into the bathroom - What I witnessed led me to believe that he had a um......
stiff problem with mechanics - causing him to not be able to aim very well. So - I spent the next 10- minutes cleaning the toilet, floor and wall.

Well - so much more to write - went to Hastings today (LOVES Kari his OT); was a rough day for Nasya - in a nutshell they played a lot; he was too rough with her; he gets very frustrated way to easily and quickly - and she always gets the brunt of it!! There you have it - and now I'm going to go tuck in my Hunky and kiss him night-night:-) He's a good boy...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Amazing People in Our Lives.....

As I wipe tears from my eyes, (happy tears:-)), I am reminded of amazing people that God places in our lives. There are very special friends we may not see as often as we would like, but we always know how awesome they are. Well, I was definitely reminded of that this evening.

I opened my email and saw a forward. I typically delete forwards - I just don't have time, so if you send them - only send the REALLY good ones! Anyway, this friend doesn't usually send forwards so I opened it. She's a creative goddess - and she had sent a photo of what looked like a new creation of something she might sell on Etsy - a quilt of some sorts. Then I read the text. Don, who was sitting next to me, asked what was wrong. I assume he could see the tears welling up in my eyes. In a nutshell she created a quilt called "Putting all the Pieces Together" and beneath the photo is a description of Sam and his mommy (moi:-)) and what we've endured - I had told her all the pieces had come together with the diagnosis, etc. and this is what she has created. I think she is auctioning it off for Autism Speaks, I'm not quite sure. Regardless, the fact that someone would take the time and thought to create a work of art for our amazing Sam touched my heart like I have not felt in a VERY LONG time! Thank you RJB!

Big Boy Pants!!!!!

YAY - big boy underwear for three days!!!! Only a few accidents. Ironically, #2 has been the easier of the two options:-) After two years of this potty struggle - I THINK it is going to finally happen. Two years ago, Sam was so excited to go potty in the toilet - this lasted about two months. Nasya joined the family and it's been a battle ever since. Yes, we once again tried everything. The 'passive' method & the 'intense' method via therapist options. Neither worked. Tried the - 'he'll do it when he's ready' method and it's taken a LONG time. He is sooooooo stubborn. He would go through a phase where he did NOT want wet pants and would change his pull-up every time he pee'd and then he'd go through a phase where he wanted to sit in wet pants. ARRRRGGGGGHHHH! It has been so frustrating. None-the-less - THREE days now and he has been soooo proud of going in the toilet.

He is at daycare this AM and demanded to wear big boy pants, so we'll see how it goes. I pick him up in 1 1/2 hours. He doesn't tell you when he has to go - so yesterday for example, I was talking with the neighbor outside and Sam was trying to get in the house, the door was locked. Well, he ended up having an accident and that was why he was trying to get in the house - wish he would have told me.... We had gone through the garage door - not the door he was trying to get in and thats why it was locked. Oh well, I still praised him for his efforts!! I don't want him to hide or be upset - actually I think he was embarrassed since he had to wisper in my ear what had happened in his pants - he did not want our neighbor to hear.....he is a good boy:-)

SO - his nickname for Nasya is now 'Cutie Bug' - which is what I call them both at times. It is soooo cute - she fell down outside yesterday and he came up to her and said - "It's okay Cutie Bug Nasya, it's okay!" He also calls me Cutie Mommy sometimes - Love My Kids!!! I actually got out of the house last night for 2 hours and when I came home - Nasya came running to me saying "MAAAAAA" and knocked me over - I LOVE going away for a while and returning to see that my beautiful kids miss me - makes it allllll worth it!

YES - a very positive blog - however, does not mean there have not been mega trials since the last time........gotta change it up once in a while:-)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Bossy Sunday

From the moment Sam awoke on this beautiful sunny day - he has been loud and very bossy. Demanding loudly - not requesting/asking to do things or have things. It started with wanting to go outside at 8:45AM - Don and I barely had our eyes open (ie: caffiene/coffee) much less being ready to 'talk' with anyone. Mind you, we HAVE to be ready to talk usually at 7AM or so - it is NEVER a casual/gentle morning. Today just seemed to be as though someone snuck in and gave him 5 Red Bulls on top of his usual behavior - (Uncle John???) we told Sam daddy had to eat and get dressed. Yelling ensued as though the world completely revolves around him - sometimes if you say "First -------, THEN --------" it works - NOT today - NOT in the least bit!!!!! So it was unbearably loud and unenjoyable until he got his way. There is NO getting through to him when he is like this - he does NOT hear what you have to say - SO if we have the time and ENERGY to wait it out (with throwing, yelling, kicking etc for however long......) we do so in order for him to understand it does NOT get his way by doing this. But when you have days where EVERY little thing is handled like this by Sam - you simply cannot muster the energy to fight out every battle. It is exhausting to say the least. EXHAUSTING.

I am giving in to things as a mother that I am very against - he usually gets his watered down juice in bed - I am a BIG advocate for only water in bed if anything. However, it is NOT worth him waking his little sister next door NOR is it worth having another half-hour/45 min battle over a drink. I VERY much dislike this and many other power struggles that we have. But when your life is constantly involving this type of behavior - you CHOOSE your battles depending on conditions. Another problem with this is his sister - she will begin to think some things are ok or 'not fair' if Sam is getting his way with something but not her. So, when she is awake and I don't have to worry about her being awakened - I typically work through the painful meltdown to get the point across with Sam. Unfortunately she can be in the line of fire - so I'm usually lugging Sam to his room several times or doing whatever it takes to keep her safe.

Well - thats it for now - maybe I'll add more later and maybe I won't:-)

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The River......

Happy hubby has been gone pretty much since Wednesday AM! After the GI Games, he is finally home as of late Sat. afternoon. The kids and I hung out this afternoon while CR, RR & GR came to visit. Sya took a nap, Sam decided he had better things to do. After a mega meltdown - due to the fact we needed to change his pants BEFORE he got his little water bottle - 40 minutes later a nap was pointless. He was throwing things and fighting me and finally I needed CarCars advice! She intervened and basically helped me to stay firm and let me know I was doing the right things. She also suggested I have a 'little' extra 'treat' (NOT in sight since we don't want to bribe) but when he does calm down and follow instructions, we affirm the good behavior.

A while later, right before they were going to leave, fit number two began. He was just being out right defiant and naughty. I put him in timeout and he, for the first time, sassed back and kept getting out of TO - so I kept puting him back until company was gone. The fit continued and he went as far as making himself puke to get my attention. It is not uncommon for him to gag himself - he has always done this for some reason. Honestly, I'd tell you what happened next but I'm so tired I don't remember!!

Don mentioned going to the river so we did. We took Rockefeller PW (our very good dog) and had a GREAT time! Sya LOVES water!! She has no fear of it and that's not always a good thing! She's fortunately a natural. Sam - was funny, he stood on the edge and was a little reluctant to go in. He kept saying the current was fast and was hesitant. He then decided a while later that he would go in himself and refused to wear his life vest. Once in - we found some muddy spots and he refused to get 'dirty.' Don went over there and covered himself in mud - the rest is history:-) We had a bit of a scare - Don was busy being silly with Sam and I glanced over and Sya had lost her footing and started struggling in the current - I didn't waste a second and dove in after her - all was good.

Rocky was such a good doggie - he stayed with us and LOVED the water and chasing the ball. I really worried that he would run after a bird or whatever and get lost - he did not. He really needed to get out - with Don gone so much this past week and the heat - he needed a big break.

OH - FYI Sam was talking about wanting to be Spiderman and Ironman for Halloween. I asked him what about John Deere Guy from last year? He said he was DONE with John Deere Guy - so I asked if I could take all his JD's to Goodwill? He said NO WAY - I'm just done with John Deere Guy!!! Everything he gets to pick out is still green - clothes, pencils, blankets, etc. The obsession continues.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pre-School time.....

This morning started off pretty well. Sam woke me up thank goodness, since I fell back asleep after my alarm!! We had to hurry and get ready to make it to pre-school orientation on time. Oh and drop off Nasya at Grandma's before. All was peachy - I had gotten myself ready, Sya awake and ready and told Sam in the mean time to get himself dressed. I kept peeking out to see if he had done this yet - of course not - so I kept reminding him. Everything else was ready except for him and we needed to be out the door - NOW! So I went in the living room with his clothes, attempted to lay him down to do so and the fit began. I had to sit on him getting hit and kicked at in the meantime - got his pants on only to have him get up and run away yelling - and taking off his pants - unders and all! So - I started taking away his favorite toys of the day so far as well as other favorites and puting them in the closet one by one. Don't like to go the negative route but didn't have time to play the 'nice' calm games to get him to relax. He finally gave in and kept yelling for me to 'come here and dress me' - whatever. Needless to say we got out the door and were only a minute late.

Orientation was good. Sam really charmed the ladies!! Not joking. He did very well - mommy filled out a bunch of paperwork and he got to play and get checked out - eyes, ears, etc. He met his teacher and saw his classroom. Classes start August 24th. PRAY that we can get his sleep situation under some control and the mornings going MUCH more smooth that usual - we plan on getting 'picture schedules' lined up to get him going in the AM - HOPE it works! We're going to try the bus and hope that peaks his interest and gives him incentive to get out the door. Might backfire - we shall see. EARLY mornings - 7:50 is when they expect these little ones to start the school day - ARGH!

Sya took a short nap today and Sam - NONE. SO - I purposely got all the animals taken care of tonight - cats fed/dog fed & exercised a bit - AND had both kids in bed all by: DRUM ROLL PLEASE.......8:55!!!!!!! PM!!!!!! So - I got caught up on emails, talked to my husband, did dishes, did toe nails, at a little ice cream, and now I'm blogging then taking a HOTTTTT shower and bed! (did you enjoy that run-on sentence????)

Off to Horse Therapy & Bio-feedback in Hastings in the AM. Maybe someday I'll post pictures. Wouldn't that be nice?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

July 27

Surprisingly, I have gotten a lot done today considering I've only had a few hours of sleep. Purchased and repotted an Aloe Vera plant (Lewis Greenscape is the ONLY place in GI to get one!!), two baskets of laundry put away, more laundry done, clothes gone through and delivered to the next lucky recipient of 'hand-me-downs', etc.

The night - WIERD! Now Sam is waking several times a night terrorized by 'seeing' various bugs. We've gone from bumble bees to butterflies. Last night, after two big tantrums from this - trying to soothe, rock, talk to, comfort, telling him that Jesus would protect him, the angels, Iron Man, John Deere, WHATEVER it takes - we gave up and at 4AM he woke again and wanted to sleep with us - this has NEVER been an option in our house - but the last two nights - we have given in just so we could get a couple hours of sleep!!! He's also been yelling for one of us - nap time OR night time - when we go in he has his hands over his ears and says the sirens are going to go off. Aye aye aye - what next.

Had daycare today - half day, and he did ok. Had an 'accident' in his pants which he normally does NOT at daycare. We were late again, due to the rough night, he did not wake well and was very difficult to get going! He wanted to stay home, he wanted to leave his jammy shirt on (typical) and I wasn't going to fight it today so I let him wear it. Finally got him out the door and to dc by 9:00. Then Sya and I were able to hang out had a great morning, she is so silly. She is copying every word you say - very subtle so you really have to listen. Into everything, doesn't miss a beat and is starting to defend herself with her big bro. She kicked him off the couch the other night and caught him off guard. Don and I just looked at him wondering what he would do - he looked at us and after a beat...started laughing! That was his reaction THIS time!!

Now yesterday - he woke SOOOOO incredibly funny and happy - we LOVED it!! Not sure what made the difference but we sure enjoyed it and so did his sissy! He and daddy were puting on shaving cream and 'shaving', he was copying and being so goofy in an unobnoxious way - it was nice.

If anyone knows of a few people that would be willing, capable and available to give us/me a break in the evenings/weekends - DO SHARE!!! We would be willing to have them come over, spend time with us and the kids/Sam to learn behaviors and consequences, etc. I do have one high schooler in mind, but she will be involved in everything and not available very often. THANKS for reading......'til next time....

Friday, July 23, 2010

Asperger’s Syndrome difficult to deal with > The Independent > Opinions > Another Opinion

Hello - below you will find a link to an article that was published on The Independent's website. YAY. Simply want to get the word out regarding Autism Spectrum Disorder and Asperger Syndrome. The article had to be 700-800 words - I started with 1350!! So this is quite watered down! So much info was left that I REALLY wanted to put in, will do at a later time via blog, not at this unGodly hour.

So, now you're wondering why I am typing again at 4:00AM in the morning??!! I just had a 'delightful' (read with sarcasm) hour with the children. Started with Sya crying and hoping she would fall back a asleep - NOOOOOO - Sam had to chime in and start is loud crying/fit for .......didn't know at first because I could not understand him! SO - while I am attending to him, Nasya is getting worse and crying louder - of course! I am with Sam for quite some time trying to get him to calm down......I made him 'chocolate drink' which is a nutritious drink we give him a couple times a day to make up for what he lacks. THAT did not work. Of course all the while he is still having a fit. Crying yelling for daddy, thrashing on his bed, etc. He wanted to rock, so fine I gave in and then took him back, he started all over again. This whole time Nasya is STILL crying, borderline screaming now. Told him to pray for daddy to get home safe and I'd be back in to check on him. Went in to Sya, changed her and started to rock and calm her. Sam, I can her him getting closer to her door with his loud cries and pleas, so I put her in her bed, screaming! THIS went on for 45 minutes - OH JOY! Back and forth, back and forth! Finally I got Sam tucked in and calm, then back to Nasya. By the end of these episodes, any type of relaxation and peace I had sleeping (for a couple hours anyway) are long gone! So I share my joyous adventure with you. Good Night, Again! Enjoy the article - any feedback is welcome!

Asperger’s Syndrome difficult to deal with > The Independent > Opinions > Another Opinion

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Yes folks, It's 4:19 AM

Hi - I just wanted to share that at 12:50 Sya woke - started taking care of her and Sam starts yelling. So I had the pleasure of dealing with both until both settled down and stopped crying. About a half hour or so and I was back in bed.

At 3:30 I was awoken to inconsolable cries and screams from Samuel - I ran into his room where he is holding a picture of daddy. He wanted absolutely nothing to do with me! I tried, would leave the room and would try again. I just didn't want Nasya to wake and then have the whole household awake at this ridiculous hour!! Plus, I wanted to be able to console Sam J. After about ten minutes in his room, he finally ran out to continue his meltdown in our room. Fine, at least it wasn't next to Nasya's room! So, I went in there to try to 'talk' to him and that was a big mistake! He ran all over - away from me - kicking on the bed, hiding behind the chair, screaming for daddy. I was trying to figure out if he knew what he was doing or not. I simply had to let him have his fit. I went out into the living room, he came out into the hall still yelling for daddy. I walked towards him and he ran back into our room saying - "NO NO go away!! I want daddy!!" Tried calling daddy but of course no answer - much of the time he sleeps like a HUGE rock. So, I went back out into the living room and waited. He eventually came out somewhat - I say SOMEWHAT chilled out and we rocked. He calmed down and I am now writing this blog - Joy to the world!! Going to try and go to bed - AGAIN. Hopefully I can stay there until at least 7:00AM! We shall see.....going to be fun with Linda and maybe Carly this am. A nap would be great today!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Random Thoughts....

Well, I have tooooo many stories to tell so I'm just going to ramble and try to give you snippits of the last week or however long it has been.......

And for you literary snobs out there, do not expect perfection from me as I have minimal time to squeeze these out! Thus, the reason you see updated blogs few and far between.

Sleep: always an issue in this house. Sam goes from having troubles staying in bed/falling asleep and having restless nights, to sleeping well all night and then mornings/after naps he is completely out of sorts - REALLY out of sorts. (For details, refer to my earlier blogs regarding his fast rocking/and tantrums). We are on the first part of the cycle that I mentioned. It is tiring and really causes nothing to get done on my list unless I ignore the children during the day. I'm so tired I need to/should take a nap IF Sam does, however, as you can see today I am blogging due to high 'follower' complaint:-) Totally fine, lets me know people are reading.....

VBS went well, we only had one day he did not want to go. Friday, daddy took him while I had a 'girls night out'. I of course ended up getting texts telling me he was having a meltdown at home before they were to go to VBS and that he probably wasn't going. He HAD to go, they were getting their decorated t-shirts back and all other goodies they made! I texted back - "Put in his CD of VBS music" which he loves!! Of course, Don texted back that I was the smartest person he knew:-) Duh, like he shouldn't know that all ready! Daddy had been gone for the week so he did not know that Sam was loving this music and was helping him to get going. It didn't help he took a late nap, which causes him to almost always be a bear the rest of the day. Yes, he went, daddy had to leave him crying on the floor - but he ended up having a great time. Never easy to leave your kid ANYWHERE in those conditions!

This weekend was great, we had the whole time as a family. Don is sooooo good at having the kids interact. He's always telling them to hug, kiss, wrestle, etc. I guess I prefer to do this with daddy in the house in case things get really out of hand we can each take one:-) - the wrestling part anyway. We had many laughs and many water fights. Nasya LOVES water - she is always in the bird bath, Rocko's dog dishes and in his pool in full clothing, tennis shoes and all. So, I am always prepared to have a soaked little girl by the time we go in. Sam, just loves to SWING and soak everyone with his big water guns that mommy 'thought' was a great clearance purchase. Little did I know how persistent and good he would be at aiming! I've gotten him to pretend that his swing set fort is a 'Pirate Ship' in the Turks & Caicos - which is where Don and I went for our 10 yr. and Sam always talks about it. So, it is fun to see him pretend. I've noticed this summer he is really starting to grasp the concept! YAYAY!!! We still have times when he gets upset because he is so literal and cannot see past that. We just have to be patient:-)

Today we were at daycare by 8:45!!! That is fantastic! Only 15 minutes late - he was so proud he went right up to his teacher and said "Ms Anela, we weren't late today!!!" He woke up fairly decent (I prepped him last night, which does not always work) after I told him - "If you wake up cranky, count to ten and tell yourself it's going to be an AWESOME day!!" He repeated that after me, which was so cute, and not sure if he actually did that, but he was a good boy while I got everyone ready. That is, until we were ready to go out the door! I thought, OF COURSE, it was too good to be true that we would be walking out the door with NO issues this morning!! I was getting our bags and he started making his 'frustrated noises' (I know some of his noises mean trouble but I was to far away to do anything) behind Nasya and then smacked her down to the ground, for what I thought was NO reason. Well, there is no good reason in OUR minds anyway. I immediately told him to go to time-out while I consoled the baby dolly. As he was yelling for daddy in t/o, I went over here and asked why he did that. He said it was because Nasya was going to get his John Deere's (which he has been playing with a alot lately) and in his mind he ALWAYS has a very serious reason - it is not usually to just be naughty. We are still learning......

Well, thats all the therapy for now. Until I have more time.......

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Mrs. Bigs Adventure....

Well, I had a wonderful surprise come about this week. My long time friend from college decided to come stay with me and the kids for a night - she thought it was to help so I could 'rest' - whatever. I'm just THRILLED to have ADULT conversation and she is sooooo great with Sam! He loves her and really responds to her. What a great birthday present - the best. We only see eachother once or twice a year and NEVER quality alone time to chat - like RIGHT now. OH, and I'm blogging:-) hahaha. It will be short and sweet.

This week has turned out to be such a great week - with Mrs. Bigs here, possibly seeing a friend from Iowa, lunch with Grandma, and whatever else is to come - it is the last year I'll be in my 30's so lets start it off GREAT!! Vacation Bible School started and now - Sam has actually begged me to TURN UP the music!!! He ALWAYS tells us to 'TURN THAT DOWN!!!!" and he actually wants to blast the VBS music, which is fine 'cause it's super music:-)!! I'm so thrilled - maybe now I can get back into my singing and cranking the tunes like I used to - I've MISSED it so much. Cross your fingers - he's always loved overtures and some classical - but I need variety - so it's a start!

Well - better stop dissin Mrs. Bigs - more later.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Sleep, Sleep, Where Art Thou Sleep?????????

Well, our lovely daughter has decided to also not sleep. We have been up hours at a time with her the last five nights. I think she is getting her two year molars, however my husband thinks she might be wanting a night light in her room. I put one in today and we shall see!! Once again, I NEED SLEEP!!!!! I am sooooo lacking, I struggle so much getting through a day. I then add guilt on top of that because I feel like I am not giving my kids (I know I'm not) what I want to give them - as far as attention and a lot more interaction. Now, Big Daddy is gone tomorrow afternoon through Thursday! The nights had better improve or I'm in BIG trouble!!

We are really working on getting Sam to understand he is NOT to 'parent' Nasya. Whenever he sees her doing something she shouldn't, he repeatedly hits her and knocks her down or does something that results in her getting hurt. He goes straight to time-out while I take care of dolly-doo-doos and comfort her. I take her to Sam and have him sincerely apologize to her and ask him why he hit her (primarily to find out his thinking since we are STILL figuring things out and probably always will be!). He always says its because she was doing something she shouldn't (only he describes in GREAT detail!) and we are trying to get him to understand that he needs to tell US and NOT do anything himself. He is not the one in charge and he seems to think he always needs to take matters in his own hands. I almost always see it coming, unfortunately I am usually not close enough to stop it! Very frustrating and I really feel for my baby girl!! Don't worry, she gets ToNS of kisses and lots of tickle time:-).

Update....not doing so great on trying to be PHAT, still fat. Lack of sleep, just plain down and out on life. Nothing I can really do about it unless I find a fantastic nanny for free to take over my nights so I can SLEEP. SLEEP SLEEP SLEEEP I need more - and I know that if I were to get quality sleep the rest would fall into place soooooo much easier! I don't think clearly, I drag through the day, I'm not the happy person I used to be, I don't have the motivation I used to. SO, for all you prayer warriors out there - I NEED SLEEP!!!!!!!