Thank you all for sharing in the lives of our three amazing children- Mairead, Jack, and Ben. We hope you visit often!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Things to do in Lowell When it's Raining

We had a few rainy days in a row this past weekend and had to postpone planned trips to the zoo and to apple picking, but the kids managed to stay entertained.  They found lots of things to do!

1- wear Mom's bra on your head.  What's on your head, Mairead.  "Boobs."  Awesome.  I am Mother of the Year, for sure.

2- Check out what's new with Thomas the Tank Engine while trying to use the potty.  They are completely disinterested in taking this next step to being big boys.  They keep telling me, "I not a big boy.  I a little boy. I can't go the potty."  Hard to argue with that logic.

3- Help Nana clean the floors (this is Ben).  I hope they like cleaning as much when they are older as they do now!

4- Paint a masterpiece.

5- Help Daddy put the groceries away while yelling, "Heave!  Heave!"  This is Jack, by the way.

6- Go to Friendly's and take the world's worst picture of Mom.  They were really well behaved, though!  Mairead was helping Daddy take the picture, though, so she was not in it.

Even though the age of two comes with a lot of whining/protesting, I am really enjoying this stage with the boys.  They are always saying or doing something new and they are just so stinkin' cute.  I love four, too!  Mairead's language and understanding is really coming along, and we are seeing so much more of her fantastic (albeit stubborn) personality.

She is doing really well at school, too!  She has all but dropped the "I don't want to go to school' thing, which is SUCH a relief for me.  Some days she does protest a little, mostly when she is really tired or if we have had a fun morning at home, but that's understandable! I got a great report from her teacher at our first IEP meeting of the year.  Her teacher and Speech Therapist (who is also the team leader) were so incredibly helpful and supportive.  I felt like I was in bizzaro-world. The SLP was suggesting things to me and asking if it would be ok for her to push for more services. Um, I'm sorry, what? You mean you actually want to GIVE HER MORE SERVICES? I must be in the wrong place...

I couldn't believe it. All we did at the meeting was put it in writing that there will be another eval and that the SLP and classroom teacher feel strongly that she needs SpEd Academic support and at the very least, an OT/PT eval, with possible additional support throughout the day (teacher initiated peer interaction, adult prompting for things like lunch in the cafeteria, gym, recess, etc in order to try to get her to engage in a back and forth conversation with a peer).

As she walked me out, the SLP told me that she really hopes to be able to help Mairead, and she said, "I just want you to know that I am going to fight for Mairead with you on all of this." I teared up (as I usually do at IEP meetings, but this time in a good way) and told her how much it meant to hear all of this. To know that I am not crazy and that what I see with Mairead is real, and warrants attention and stupport- it's just unbelievable.  We are concerned that she will test 'too high,' but the SLP says she is going to provide evidence to the SpEd dept to prove that the test is not measuring M's areas of need.  Let's hope this leads to even more support for her so we can really see her shine!

Her teacher says that while she is still not conversing with others, she is responsive to other kids.  If they ask for a toy, she always gives it to them.  When they tell her to run or follow them, she does so happily.  She is very good about listening to the teacher and is happiest when they are singing or dancing.  It was hard to hear about the things that she really struggles with, but just to know that she is generally happy and that she is a good kid during school made me really happy!

The boys are doing great at their 'school,' too!  They are so cute holding hands and walking into school together.  Jack wears his backpack himself but Ben insists that "only Mommy can carry it."  They are excited to go and can tell me the names of all the kids in the class and what they do each week.  It's so great to see them enjoying it so much!

Last week, while the Patriot's game was on, Mairead was sitting with Dave.  Whenever he would yell at the tv, she would imitate him.  It is so funny to hear your four year old yell (with perfect inflection), "Oh, come on!" or "You have got to be kidding me!"

Jack is talking non-stop, seriously, non stop, lately.  Mostly, it is to tell me what he wants or how something should be done.  He is also getting a little too smart for his (or my) own good.  About a week ago, he fell and hurt himself, and he was really upset. So I said, "Let's get blanket and watch Thomas so you can feel better," and we sat on the couch for a bit. Now, at least once a day, he runs over to me pointing to some part of his body and saying (in a very convincing manner), "Mommy, I hurt. I hurt." I ask, "are you ok?" He says, "I needa watch Thomas and feel better." He's two and a half... he is going to give me a run for my money.

Ben is Jack's protector and baby brother at the same time.  If Lily sits in Jack's chair, Ben demands that she move.  "No!  That is Jackie's chair!  Don't take Jackie's chair!"  He follows his older brother everywhere and agrees to pretty much every activity Jack suggests.  If Jack isn't in the room, Ben wants to know where he is.  It's very sweet.

Jack looks out for Ben, too.  We were at the playground the other day and Ben (of course) was on the highest part of the climbing structure running across a bridge and Jack was yelling, "Be careful, Ben!  Be careful!"

We happen to have a large cut-out of Tommy Heinsohn's face.  Ben saw it and said, "Look!  It's Grampy!"

In addition to Percy, the Thomas series has a train named Falcon.  Just what two year olds need to be saying.  Oh, and Sir Toppham Hatt?  Sounds like "Topless Hat." 

The other day, something about Jack made him look just like Brian.  I said, "Oh, Jackie, you  look just like Brian today."  Mairead said, "And I can be Christin!"

Lately, the boys have been watching a (really awful) movie called "Thomas and the Magic Railway."  There is something in it about gold dust, how it's magic, it's important, etc.  Today, while they were supposed to be napping, they were saying:

Ben   I can't find my gold dust, Jackie!
Jack   You can't find it?  Where the gold dust go?
Ben   I don't know, Jackie?  I needa find it!
Jack   Here you go, Ben!  Here's the gold dust!
Ben    Oh, thank you, Jackie!

I love them.