The Holidays with Little Man

SO let’s get real here….because of course that’s why I started blogging again to be able to write out my real feelings and life adventures. Not that my past posts haven’t been real but they’ve been more uplifting then this one I suppose.

You know what’s hard? Having a child that other’s consider not on the “norm” side of things. You know what is harder? Having a child that is not considered the “norm” during the holidays. Mainly because you most likely have at least SOME traditions you like to try and keep and share with your little one and sometimes when they have young siblings it’s hard on them as well because they don’t understand why you might have to do things differently.

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(Andrew is diagnosed with Autism,Sensory Processing Disorder and other developmental delays. He is 3 and a half but functions more on a 2 year old level with severe language delays and I’m guessing some OCD issues that usually go along with Autism)

We have taken the last 2 years of holidays relatively easy since Andrew’s issues have popped up. One thing that I thought would be simple though was doing cookies. Boy was I wrong. He WANTED to do cookies he WANTED to cut them out and sprinkle them….the problem was he wanted to do it all on his own without sharing and put them in the oven all by himself. I feel guilty for suggesting something that lead to a major meltdown.

He WANTED to be the only one using the rolling pin and by the time he had to share that he couldn’t fathom doing something else…the poor kid I cannot imagine having your head and body just that jumbled all the time.  I snapped this pic within the only 30 seconds he wasn’t crying or trying to take things from his sister so I could remember at least we tried. Squishy,his sister and their older sibling Roman finished the cookies after I got Andrew back downstairs.

The whole thing just sucks. It sucks that the poor kid is 90% of the time so on edge he can’t relax and enjoy the holidays like some of us. It breaks my heart for him and I find myself getting angry. Not at him but at the situation. Last Christmas I stayed home with Andrew while Squishy and her dad went to the families I just knew it was going to be too much for him,and I wanted Squishy to be able to spend time with her cousins.

This year since we live much closer we’ll try taking him over and make sure he has a quiet place,if needed,but he tends to be a runner when he gets over stimulated. So if I have to take him home I will. I”m really hoping though that he’ll be able to enjoy some of it…..because this kid is awesome. He tries even when I know he has figured out it might be hard on him.

He will enjoy Christmas with us in his own way and that will be awesome as well. We will go slow on the decorating,and take breaks when needed. We will make new traditions that may or may not stick. And next year we’ll see where he’s at and adjust from there.

 

 

The Olders

When you have 6 kids from the ages of 19 down to 3 life is never ever still. I honestly thought when they became teenagers that they would,ya know maybe need me less. HA! Parenting teens is hard you guys! I’ve been doing it for the last 6 years and just as I get one through a tough phase the other one comes beebopping into it. I think “ok I just went through this phase with their older sibling I’ve got this” and then BAM they add a new spin to it.

I’ve always raised my kids with encouraging them to have their own opinions and values AS LONG as they were respectful of the other people in the family. It’s important I think because well…they’re going to grow up someday and be an adult and most likely will not always have the same views as us. Some days though,it’s like an episode of Family Ties where Alex and Mallory and the parents are all in an argument.I probably just dated myself there but,that’s what I always think of. At least it makes me smile in the midst of the “how can you even think like that?” debates.

Then there are the days when the teens don’t agree with how I’m parenting the littles(ages 6 and 3). HA! Those are always fun days. Listen here kiddo,I pushed these 2 adorable creatures out of my hoohaw I can raise them how I feel fit. I mean I didn’t screw up the olders TOO badly.

That being said for the most part my teens are awesome young adults just trying to navigate their way through young adulthood,which is terrifying at best. My 17 year old has been working non stop at Shopko now for the last 3 months. Some mornings his days start at 3 am!

My 19 and 16 year old are living in an apartment the next town over so my 16 year old can stay at the homeschool parent partnership he has been at for the last 5 years. He found his passion for acting at this school taking him from it would kill him. He has the lead as Aladdin this year and he gets to sing! For this arrangement to work it takes a lot on my 16 year olds end to make it work. He must still go off the homeschool lesson plan I make for him as well as pass his tests,make it to classes,rehearse his lines,and learn how to cook for himself. My 19 year old oversees him and is also searching for a job within walking distance of their apartment to help with the bills. The 16 year old comes home for the weekend almost every week and we go over what he has learned and you know spend time with him since we are still his legal guardians. And I miss both of them terribly.

My 14 year old after years of being homeschooled decided this year they wanted to dive head in to 8th grade public school! I applaud them for that because well 8th grade as a new kid SUCKS! They have taken the challenge head on and are not only doing well in classes,but has a circle of friends.

And me?I am here when there’s the rare chance they need an ear. I have found they talk less as teens but man when they do open up some of the best discussions ever happen. I love watching how different all 4 are. Now when they need a ride somewhere thats a whole other story. Did I mention not a single one drives?

Yes they need you when they’re little but I’m finding they need you even more when they’re teens. You’re going to cry over somethings,be left bewildered over others,and sometimes just beam with pride. Even among the chaos, I know at this moment they are all doing their best and that makes me happy and proud of them. Yup my teens are pretty awesome people….and of course now since I typed this I guarantee you one of them will give me a WTF moment today,because ya know…..that’s life!

C is for…Doughnut

One of the things that bring me joy in my life is watching my kids grow and develop not only their own personalities but also develop their sense of humor. I’ve got some funny kids,in fact I’m pretty sure Lane could be a stand up comic at this point. Which meshes well with his goals of becoming an actor. Every one of my kids have a different type of humor it is so fun to watch…..although with the teens sometimes inappropriate.

Although today’s comedic genius and timing goes to Andrew,my three and a half year old.This kid has timing guys! This weekend I was saying how I really needed to start working out again and everyone was asking why it mattered. I gave my normal answer of because I feel better when I do and then said, “Besides you don’t want me to get all fat again do you.”….well Andrew in his infinite timing happens to walk by at that time and responding to something totally different responds “too late” and just keeps walking leaving all of us slack jawed and then rolling.

 

 

A couple days ago Andrew and I were going through a stack of Sesame Street phonics cards. He was telling me the name of each letter and then the sound it makes and sometimes telling me what the picture was of. We got to the letter C and of course Cookie Monster was on it. I asked him the letter…her told me. I asked him what sound it made….he told me. I asked him who was on the card….he told me. I then asked him what Cookie Monster was holding…he looks at me straight in the face and says “doughnut” then just starts cracking himself up. You know that laugh that loud belly laugh that told me right away he knew and he was being funny.

Last night I asked him again “hey Andrew what does Cookie Monster like to eat” and yup without skipping a beat he answers….”doughnuts” followed by more laughter.

Yeah this kid is a comedic genius……

 

 

Welcome To the Cuckoo’s Nest

I was totally going to take this weekend to set my blog totally up and write this great first post that would captivate,intrigue,and probably horrify you about parenting a little. Instead,the two adults of the household spent most the weekend sick and taking turns over who would be feverish and who would be chilled.

You know what changes when the parents are sick? Absolutely nothing! There was still a teenager to take back and forth to work(at crazy hours may I add because….Black Friday),A lesson plan to try and coordinate with the other teenager(who lives with his eldest brother…that’s a whole other blog post),a hundred games of Fancy Nancy Memory to play with the 6 year old to keep her occupied, and a million super hero costume changes and sleep schedule disruptions for the 3 year old because….snow and full moon(Special needs parents you get me). Add in a 14 year old on new meds that have totally jacked up her sleep and yup no rest for the weary.

Thankfully, I woke up feeling much better today just in time for it to be Monday and for my youngest to start exhibiting signs of this nasty bug (seriously he just sneezed a butt ton of snot while I was typing this sentence).Seriously could we not have all synced up on this illness? Then maybe I would’ve gotten some rest.Never mind it’s one of my busiest days of the week. Now please excuse this momma as I try to shower off 2 days of sickness and ick from my body,which looks like will be promptly replaced by the 3 year old’s sickness.

Oh and did I mention we had kittens this 4 day weekend as well?

Welcome to The Cuckoo’s Nest…….