Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Of Toddlers, Schools, and Uteri

I actually started this post last night but ran out of steam. And then I was pushed off the computer by a teenager who hadn't been on Facebook for 27 minutes and was experiencing withdrawal pains. So I went to bed. But now I'm back and a little more awake. I've been wanting to get back on here and post again, but I've had a lot to do lately. I keep a running list of things I want to cover in my posts and my list is getting longer and longer, so I need to get this done, too.

I spent yesterday doing my bi-monthly shopping and errand running. That takes a lot out of me, especially when I have all 4 boys with me. Plus I haven't taken my SuperMom vitamins in 2 weeks now and I think I am feeling the effects of that. I should post about SuperMom sometime. For now: it's the best multi-vitamin I have ever found and both Paul and I have been taking them for several years now. The only thing I don't like about them is the alfalfa taste and the fact that they are the size of horse pills. But when I run out, I can tell. They're kind of pricey so I substituted some other multis that I got at the health food store. They upset my stomach, so I've just gone without. My new bottle should arrive today, though, which is good!

Well, let's see - what's new at the Heywood House? There's lots going on with Sam. See him up there? That was Saturday. Paul's folks came up to give us our Christmas gifts and celebrate Paul's birthday. Before we did Paul's birthday, Sam thought he'd help himself to the cake that Dorothy made. He very carefully scooped off every scallop off the top of one of the sides, and then when he was done with those, he proceeded to do the same to the bottom. Can we say Sugar High?! It was cute, though.

Sam lost his bottles last week. I had given lip service to the idea that I was going to take away his bottles after Christmas. He's been quite attached to them. He'd drink out of sippy cups, but always preferred the bottle. In fact, there were times that I would offer him a cup and he would very pointedly open the cupboard door where I have a small tub of all his bottles and cups, take out a bottle, and hand it to me! But I wasn't totally committed to the idea. I assumed there would be a battle and I hated to take away something that he liked so much. So anyway, Tuesday night we were watching the game (Orange Bowl - go Hawkeyes!) and Paul noticed Sam carrying around a bottle and commented, "I thought you were getting rid of those." Well, yeah...eventually! So, I half-heartedly scooped up all the bottles, intending to save them in case I needed them at some point. Anyway, long story short - Sam never asked for them again. He willingly took a sippy to bed and the next day he was very content to just have cups. So I threw away every single bottle! That was easy!

And here's the big shocker: Sam is potty training! I had zero intention of doing that right now. Will and David were 5 before they completely trained and Ben was 6 1/2. So I figured we were years away yet. And we may still be before it's all done. But last week Sam kept talking about "potty" so I started popping him on the toilet - and he started going! Then, he started refusing to wear diapers after he'd go, preferring to run around commando in his pants. That's an invite for disaster, so I dug out all the training and plastic pants that had been given to us and he's been in those for a week now. I'm still using diapers for bedtime and when we go places but when I run out I think I'll just buy pull-ups for those purposes. He's made amazing progress in just a week. He's staying dry most of the time and when he doesn't, he usually lets me know. I'm sure impressed! I remember how hard it was with the others and this is so easy! Of course, with them, I'm recalling that I only ever used pull-ups, rather than cloth training pants. I suspect that may have had something to do with the delay in their training.

We may have taken a step backwards yesterday, though. We were in Walmart and I put him on the toilet. Well, it had an automatic flusher and it went off and it completely freaked Sam out. He would not get back on it after that! He wouldn't go at Best Buy either. We met Paul for lunch at McDonalds and he was able to get Sam to go there, but later, when I attempted to get him on the toilet at Ben's social skill's class, it was the same thing again. So, we'll have to work through this. What I thought was interesting was that when Sam was freaking out at Walmart he didn't cry out for me or for Daddy. He yelped, "Will! Will!" I was right there! But he wanted his brother!

Sam's new word: "Dooby", as in "Scooby Doo." Ben is crazy about Scooby and spends a lot of his time watching Scooby dvds. So, Sam watches them too and he came to me last week holding one of the dvds and saying, "Dooby!" I remember when Will was 3, some friends loaned us a bunch of Scooby videos and he was too scared to watch them! Evidently, Sam isn't bothered, though! Monsters and ghosts don't bother him - just flushing public toilets!

Yesterday morning David was teasing Sam and pointing to various body parts and asking if it was something other than what it really was (like pointing to Sam's ear and asking, "Is this your tummy?" - things like that). So Sam reached over, patted David's head and said, "David's butt!" We all about died laughing, although David didn't think it was all that humorous!

I do have things to write about other than my favorite 2 year old, so I'll get to those now...

I have marked down on my blog list to write about Judges 2. I know it was something profound that hit me the other day as I was reading it, but I think I'm going to save it for a future blog. I have a vague memory of what impressed me, but I can't think what it was I wanted to say! So, you'll have to watch for that one!

I have decided to memorize Psalm 103. I haven't memorized anything in 20 yrs, so this is big! I was listening to a radio program last week - just caught the tail end - but the guest commented that if you have this psalm memorized, depression just "isn't an option." That may be a bit simplistic, but I went and looked up the passage. And I read it again the next day. And the next. What an encouraging part of Scripture! I'd like to be able to draw upon that from memory. I'll let you know how it goes!

First thing this morning I drove over (down? I'm directionally challenged!) to SE Warren Jr/Sr high school to chat with the principal about their sp. education program. I was supposed to go there last week, as well as to Knoxville, but then we had two snow days at the end of the week, so I had to reschedule. It's an excellent program and if we lived closer, I don't think I'd think twice about enrolling Ben in it. But if we go with that school, we are looking at 2 hours of driving a day to get Ben to and from there. That's a lot. And if I actually drove the speed limit, it would take longer. Mapquest timed it at 48 minutes one-way; I made it in 30. I generally consider it a personal challenge to beat Mapquest's times! Monday I went to Carlisle and then, on a whim, I drove down to Pleasantville (our district) and just dropped in. Both seem to be very good programs. Carlisle is a bigger school district and it's growing. The middle school is brand new and very sleek and modern. They could help Ben, I'm sure of it. But there's just something about Pleasantville...it's a small, what I would call "country" school. We have been very impressed with their high school sports with Will's involvement in football. I met the director of sp. education for middle school yesterday and he dropped everything to speak with me for a good half hour. I walked in thinking, "Carlisle is it" and left thinking, "I don't know!" I think Ben would do better with a male teacher, which he would have at Pville. I would probably need to enroll Ben this May in school so that they could evaluate him and get to know him and thus have his 8th grade program planned out before school starts next fall. I don't really like that but it's either then or doing it in August and I think it would be better to do it ahead of time. I get a better "vibe" from Pville, but I don't know if that is reason enough to send Ben there. We have a few weeks to decide and will be praying greatly about this during them. I want to find the "right" school for Ben, but maybe there is no "right" school. From what I am learning, sp. education students pretty much have their school day designed to fit them and whatever they need and maybe that can be done at any school.

We had our first city council mtg the other night with our new mayor and new council members. Afterwards was date night, but it was really cold and we had gotten more snow dumped on us, so Paul called ahead to the Checkerboard, where we usually eat, to make sure they were still open. They stayed open just for us! We were the only customers there. I felt a little silly. But I made their night because, on an impulse, I told the waitress that I was planning to write an article about the Checkerboard and submit it to "Our Iowa" magazine. Well, I didn't know I was actually going to do that until I heard myself talking! In the last issue they were soliciting submissions for our favorite "ma and pa" restaurants and I had had the thought go through my mind that I ought to do that. But I had not yet pursued it or thought seriously about it. Well, the waitress told the owner, who got very excited. So, then I knew I was committed! All night long she kept peppering me with information I could put in my article. So when I got home I pulled out the last issue of the magazine and saw that they are asking for "brief" essays on our favorite restaurants. Hmmm - that presented a difficulty because "brief" is not generally part of my writing repertoire. But I managed to squeak out something that was only three paragraphs long, so hopefully that will meet the "brief" criterion! I haven't heard back from "Our Iowa" yet and it may take awhile. I just really hope they publish it because I'll be so disappointed for the Chekerboard if they don't!

Ben has developed quite the interest in old music over the past few months, which I am finding amusing. We got him a Beach Boys cd for his birthday and he listens to it all the time. He has been telling me lately that he wants an Elvis cd now. So, maybe for Valentine's Day...

That music was old when I was kid, but there are signs that I am getting old, as well. The other day I was trying to find something that was in plain sight. I had enlisted David's help to find it (can't even remember now what it was I was searching for - another sign of my encroaching elderly-hood!) and he, of course, found it right away and asked sarcastically, "Are you blind?" And then a moment later he seriously added, "Well, you are going to be 39 in a couple of months!" Yes, 39 - an almost straight shot to support hose and bifocals. Actually, the bifocals may become a reality. I've started having a terrible time being able to read small print in recent months. The old mare ain't what she used to be!

I heard from my mom today. You might be in prayer for my cousin, Cindy. She's 7 yrs older than me. She was found unresponsive in her home this week by her sister and was flighted to Iowa city. They ended up doing a hysterectomy on her, which makes me think I am missing part of the story because I don't see how uterine troubles could cause one to quit breathing. They do believe she had a heart attack at some point in the past - must have been some scarring on her heart or something. She's in a rehab facility now back in NE Iowa and will be there for a few weeks. But she could use some prayer, I'm sure - sounds pretty traumatic.

I found out today that my surgery is scheduled for 7am on the 25th. I have to be there at 6. Good grief - doesn't anybody do surgery during normal hours? I had to be at the hospital by 5am when I had Sam. How about a 10am surgery? That would fit into my schedule much better! I see Dr. Morgan next Tues. and that's when I'll find out for sure if she wants to go ahead with this ablation or would prefer to just do a hysterectomy. I'm voting for the ablation, but we'll see.

Better get to my day. Time to take Sam potty- again. And David needs help with his math. Ben wants lunch. It never really ends around here. Perhaps I'll actually be given a day off when I have my surgery - something to look forward to!

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