Olive Background

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jordan on His 11th Birthday.... D.O.B. May 1st

To the only boy who didn't require an emergency C-section, though I still got one.

To the baby who always looked at his parents like they were incompetent.

To the boy who doesn't like most food and heaven forbid if it touches.

To the boy who is too smart for his britches.

To the boy who gets disgusted by his parents willingness to talk about ANYTHING without embarrassment.

To the boy who is so dang handsome.

To the boy who flies under the radar.

To the boy who has a caring heart.

To the boy I am lucky to call my son.

Happy Birthday.

I love you!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Week in Review

This week James and Jordan started their 4 week support group for siblings of kids with ASD. I hear they didn't talk much but did listen and participate to a degree. I think they liked hearing the stories from the other children present about their siblings. Our boys probably thought they were the only kids in the world to have a brother that drove them nuts. NEWS FLASH!!!!!! Not so. James went as far as to say that Jared wasn't so bad. Nice. This is going to be a good experience for them.

This week I made James get a haircut. For the past few months I have let him grow it out a bit. It's not long, but it's definitely more scruffy than the rest of his friends with less cool moms who force them to have short hair. This week I finally had enough. James' hair grows in thick and frizzy. You could have little birds nesting in it. It is on the coarse side and he looks like a Q-tip. So I took him to a cute girl who does men's cuts almost exclusively. He looks so much better. He hates it. I don't care, I like it. Now he needs to style it which will be another battle. I'm in no rush for him to like girls, but perhaps if he did enough to make his noggin look attractive, that would be okay.

James is currently away in Banff on a band trip. He's having a good time and I am anticipating a present when he gets home because I told him he had to bring me a chocolate, specifically Rogers Chocolate (http://www.rogerschocolates.com/) if he finds a store that carries it. He's making new friends and having fun with existing ones. We also went to an information night at the high school he will be attending in the fall. High School??????? Man, I am too young for that!

Jordan is learning Japanese this week, thanks to the fact that my parents are here for the week. Heaven forbid I get around to it. It's nice to see his enthusiasm for it and that he in interested in learning something about part of his heritage. With a Japanese Grandma around for a week you can learn a lot of Japanese for an almost 11 year old. He's went for a sleep over last night to a friends house. It's been quite around here for the last couple of days with boys away. We recently finished up his middle school registrations. He's excited to move up from elementary. I am excited to deal with the scheduling of three different schools. Note sarcasm.

Jared had a difficult week transitioning back into school after our spring break. We were all anticipating it so no big surprises. The great thing was that when you see the results of redirection now you also see the great strides that have taken place over the year. He has come so far and we are so excited about that. This week his obsession is collecting phone numbers and this has freaked some of the kids out. We've been working though it. Our running is improving. He doesn't want to run faster now that he can complete a mile. This has been a struggle because I want to run faster. Did I just say that?

Jackson seems to have flown under the radar this week. I don't know if I have mentioned this ever, but I am so blessed to have this little boy who has such a sweet disposition. He just does his own thing and cuddles me when he forgets that he's "too old for that" (his words). I know that he bears a feeling of responsibility for his older brother which is sad since he's only 7. The other week he saw Mrs. W (Jared's teacher) and said, "Mrs. W! How is my Jared today?" I really hope he gets to have her as a teacher.

I finally called the family support office that is supposed to make my life easier. They are changing workers for our area. They are going to call me back. Still waiting. I did a job at work in 8 minutes that takes one of my co-workers 25 minutes. I don't know what she does with her time, but I am thinking I may try to beat her to those tasks that take her away for too long. Work is an interesting place.

Spring is here usually. We were having lovely warm weather and now it's cool with snow flurries. Sean got a sunburn on Wednesday and on Friday was unable to work due to the temperature and snow on the ground. After all the griping people do about the cold extended winter we had, it only took two days of heat to hear griping about the heat. Suck it up!!!!!

That's our week. Not very exciting, but hey, that can be good sometimes.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Recommendation Criteria

This week was a crazy week. Sean and I were both working and the boys were off for spring break. I was coming home everyday on my lunch break to make sure that the house was still standing and the boys were all in reasonable shape. We survived, but I am dreading summer holidays and the stress that will bring into an already stressful life.

The boys must have done a bit of spring cleaning at school by the looks of their backpacks. Jared had one especially cute item of work. It was a book review and what caught my notice was the fact that I think it is one of the most legible pieces of work he has ever done.

He wrote about the storyline and at the end had to say whether or not he would recommend the book to anyone. This is the part that I just love.

"I would recommend this book to Mrs. W (his teacher) because she is really nice and looks really good. I would even recommend this book to C. (his crush) because she looks like a good reader and looks pretty. I would even recommend this book to Mrs. P (his assistant) because she looks smart and is great."

So there you go people. If you want Jared to recommend a book to you, you know the criteria. Good luck!!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Some Sanity in the World of Feminism

I am not a bra burning feminist. I like my bras, thank you very much. However I do consider myself interested in the rights of women and feel strongly that we shouldn't have to fight so hard on issues such as equal pay, sexual harassment, and equal opportunities.

There are issues I do not identify with and at times I wonder if my brand of feminism is different from others. I have never had a problem with the fact that the word "woman" has the word "man" in it. I don't have issue being referred to as the "chairman" when I am in such a position.

I remember a few years back reading about the first voting opportunity the women of Afghanistan had after the fall of the Taliban rule. They were threatened with harm and death if they voted, yet they came out and stood in line and I cried and was in awe of their bravery and strength.

I read an opinion piece from a newspaper last week that echoed some of my feelings about some of the things that as women we take for granted. I thought I would link it here so I can remember and maintain my own perspective.


A Week in Review

The last 8 days have been busy. I spent most of the time wanting to die. We've all been out of commission in some way. Except for Jared. He was fine. He was the only one.

Last Friday (3rd) James had his wisdom teeth removed. Sean and I knew in the days approaching dentist day that we were getting sick. We both woke up Friday morning feeling very much less than stellar, but the show must go on and I took James for his date with surgery. I learned a couple of things about him. First, he was pretty good staying calm despite his nervousness. He drove us all insane last week asking questions about the surgery that we could not answer and if we could answer the question we knew he was only going to ask the same questions at least 50 more times. Like the answer would change....right. Second, James has uncooperative veins, especially when he is dehydrated. The nurse poked him in three different places on his arms with no luck. They left it to the anesthesiologist. He did it first try, but then that is why he gets the big bucks.

James gave me permission to publish these (like he had a choice). This was James in recovery. I was planning to video him with my Blackberry, and didn't realize I needed a media card to do it so that plan was thwarted. I was actually impressed that James was coherent enough on the way home to write notes to me since his mouth was so full of gauze. He rested well in the afternoon and the only times he caused trouble was when he would come upstairs, turn deathly white and fall to the floor because he couldn't stand anymore. He did this about four times.

Sean and I spent most of Friday afternoon to Monday morning in bed being sick and only moving to do some parental obligations. We were a sorry pair. We really felt awful and I was mad that I was in that state for the second weekend in a row.

We had to leave the house briefly on Saturday because our realtor was holding an open house (oh, our house is listed) so we crashed in the van at a park for 90 minutes. What a sorry sight we were. James was in pain. Jordan was nauseous. Sean and I were sick. Jared and Jackson were happy....irritatingly so....and played at the park.

Sunday was a write-off.

Monday came and it was back to work. Sean was booked solid for the week for window washing. I was off to the bank. James stayed home. Jordan stayed home. Jackson woke up looking like this..........he stayed home, but was a complete terror. No fever. No pain. I figured if it was contagious it was probably before the spots appeared. He was a little tomato. So on Tuesday I wrote a note to his teacher not to be alarmed by his appearance and sent him to school.

I went into ugly cough at work in front of customers three times. I couldn't breath. My skin went red and blotchy. My eyeballs turned an alarming shade of maroon. Of course there were tears everywhere. By Tuesday I was on a strict diet of cough syrup which seemed to keep me in line until Thursday when I forgot to take it.

On Tuesday all but James were back to school. This gave him a chance to visit with Sean's family who arrived as we were heading out to work and school. They stayed with us Tuesday night before heading on to Calgary for more visits and back to the island.

Thursday I attended my great uncle's funeral. He was 90 years old. I learned he water skied until he was 82 and was on the roof last Christmas hanging lights.

We got two boys registered for middle school and high school respectively. I survived a half mile run. I almost didn't survive the mile we did today. James is starting to be able to open his mouth and eat. We have prayed for this day. Spots are gone. Sickness is slowly leaving the premises, but the cough lingers.
The weather has been wonderful the last few days. Indeed with Sean outside washing windows now I worry that the white man will be darker than me in no time and I don't know how I feel about that. Anyway, this is Jared and me after our run today and shortly after I almost died over the kitchen sink. He's running the mile without stopping now and I am feeling more comfortable with it too. I think I've convinced him he can also run the half mile, but this has been a bone of contention between us. He was always saying he could run the mile but the half was so hard. Jared loves his thermals and I hope he will give them up for the season soon. He looks like a bike courier. I love it. The other boys shake their heads at him, but I love his sense of style most of the time.

Easter is tomorrow and I am preparing too much food. James will only be able to eat the mashed potatoes and some mushy broccoli. Jordan will only eat the mashed potatoes and broccoli. Jared will eat most of dinner. Jackson will decide last minute which brother to emulate. My bet is Jordan. That leaves a large turkey (I got one for free from a bank client) for Sean and me. I think I know what next week's menu will be.

Happy Easter!!!!!