Happy Halloween!

There are some things in life that are just so much fun.

Having kids at Halloween has to be one of them.

I'm so excited for tonight's trick-or-treating. I may be more excited than the boys. Although, maybe not.

I worked the late shift last night until 3 am (why I'm still up and not napping is a question for Elizabeth) and when I got home there were children in my bed along with Chuck. Not an unusual occurance at all. We co-sleep and always have so no biggie.

Last night was different though. One of those boys was AWAKE. I'm not talking groggy..."I just woke up and came into bed with Daddy" awake. I'm talking full-blown "I'm being a chatterbox" awake.

I finally got him to come into his bed with me to lay down and he was chattering up a storm about how TODAY was Halloween.

"when's it going to be daylight, momma?"
"when are we going trick-or-treating?"
"I get to wear my Spiderman costume today!"
"Did you know today is Halloween?"

I finally convinced him it was time to sleep and cuddle and we still had HOURS of sleep left before daylight (if only it were more).

When we got up for school we got to put the webslinger costume on and all was right in the world. Sometimes I just look at my kids and think "I'm the luckiest person alive". I had that moment with Luke this morning while he was getting out of the car at preschool. He jumped out and made his web slinging fingers and took the traditional spiderman stance and it was priceless. I had that moment with Elizabeth a few moments ago, just sitting her playing and laughing together. It's like I see them all every day but am so busy in the day to day workings of running a house and a family, that I don't SEE them. And when I do it's like giving birth all over again. It's truly amazing.


We have lift off

So yesterday was our 6th wedding anniversary. We got a sitter (well, actually two. The boys' sitter for the last 2 years has been Eric and he started bringing his girlfriend Sarah. So now they usually both babysit the kids) and went out on a date.

It was absolutely fantastic. We went out to dinner at Charlie Kangs, because when we were first dating that was one of our favorite places. I think some of that was because of the closeness to campus and the fact we didn't leave the room for too long ;) After dinner we hit the Ten Pound Fiddle to see the Casey Neil Trio. It was a fantastic show-a blend of Americana folk, Irish folk and a couple songs of folk-punk. After the show we stopped to get a cd and asked if he would sign it for us, which he did "Happy Anniversary Lisa and Chuck".

After that we were unscheduled. We decided to hit the hot tubbing place. What a great idea! It was so nice and relaxing and wow. Anticipation definitely makes things way more intense. I told Chuck I felt like a high schooler again.

On the way home, we had some time to talk. A long time ago, I knew the most amazing woman. She was a wonderful mom, a wonderful wife, and a wonderful friend. She told me one time that the key to a successful marriage is to not discuss the kids, the finances or the bills when you are out on a date with your husband. That proves to be difficult for us. But on the way home, we discussed feelings, wants, needs. It was so nice. And after the whole evening, I just felt really reconnected with my husband. Working opposite shifts really sucks because I feel like we HAVE to reconnect every couple of months because I sometimes I feel like we're just two people living in the same house. So nights like those really help me get through another month or two.

Happy Anniversary Honey...I love you.


Out of the mouths of babes....

Hot on the tails of my last post about granny shoes, I hear this conversation this morning outside my bedroom door:

Lucas: Uh-oh! Grandma L left her shoes here.
Zachary: No, those are momma's new shoes.
Lucas: Nope, they're not. They are Grandma's shoes. They are for old ladies.

*cringe* So, there you have it. The kids even recognize them as granny shoes. Chuck, of course, thought it was hilariously funny.

Then Zachary. My dear sweet Zachary. *sigh* He made sure to tell me to not walk on the grate at the McDonald's because I was "WAAAAYYY TOOOO BIG" and could fall right through it. Then, later on in our trip to the dr's today, he told Daddy to make sure to tell him when I was coming because he didn't want to be smooshed.

Kids tell it like it is. And according to my kids, I'm a fat momma with granny shoes.


Shhhhh...Don't tell my husband.

He was right. Again. I don't know how those things keep happening!

I have a heel spur on my right foot and then this weekend, I sprained my left ankle. So, needless to say I've been hobbling around since Sunday. Heel spurs are not fun. Just touching the back of my heel hurts and after driving it is so super sensitive.

But my husband has been hounding me for, oh...um...YEARS, to get some "supportive shoes" because I tend to wear trendy flat tennies or flip flops or I'm barefoot. Well, yesterday I went and bought some supportive shoes. They look like granny shoes. They are all white and from Dr. Scholls of all things.

BUT, they are sooo comfortable. And my feet didn't bother me at all last night. I think I even stopped limping.

Granted this morning when I woke up both feet were bothering me again...but I put my shoes on to take the boys to school and I think I'll just leave them on...I mean now I know they help and all, why not?! :)


I can see clearly now...

I'm in a great mood today. Well, actually just tonight. Actually just within the last hour. I've had a migraine all day today BUT the news that I'm getting longevity pay in my November 1 paycheck helped me immensely!! I wish we had a great sitter to watch all 3 kids for the whole weekend because I'd love to go on a weekend away for our anniversary. Ah, some day that'll happen.

Anyway, Zachary is still doing wonderfully. He was excited because he had three whole days without his name being on the board and without having to be removed from the classroom. Yipee!! Today he was very whiney and emotional though. That's not too typical of him so we'll watch how that progresses. I am trying to keep notes in my calendar as to what we are seeing and such so we can discuss it with the dr. in 2 weeks. I told my mom yesterday that everything we've tried to teach Zachary over the last 5 years is gelling now. Everything. He remembers his manners, he doesn't hit, he waits his turn, he does things when asked. For the last 5 years, he's been listening and trying but couldn't. And now he can.

Lucas is doing awesome. He had a GREAT day at school today, per his preschool teacher. They just love him there. And how can you not? He's so charismatic and loveable and cute. You just want to pick him up and gobble him up. But, I think Luke is having some "middle child" syndrome lately. He's been acting out a little bit more, begging me to stay home for dinner with him, and wants to do everything his brother does. I think he's feeling a little left out. Maybe I'll try to go out this weekend just him and I and do something special.

E started eating solids this weekend. And, lo and behold, I actually made the baby food myself!! It's way easier than I ever thought it would be too...I should have done it with the boys. It's weird for me that now I have 3 kids I'm doing things that I didn't think I'd have TIME for with just 1 or 2. Anyway, she had squash and loved it. I think we'll try sweet potato tomorrow or Wednesday. For now, I'll leave you with some pics!



I'm ecstatic. My heart was seriously overflowing today after school. Zachary got off the school bus like most any other day. Except today it was different.

Today he was excited to tell me about his school day.

Normally, I have to pry information out of him. *I* have to be the one to open his backpack and get out his work and notes (98% of the time bad. Well, make that 99%) and today he was opening his backpack before we hit the doorway.

He had something to show me.

A note from his teacher. It had to be good because he was excited and yet I was still filled with dread.

Zach- EXCELLENT day! On target all morning. Complained of being cold and hungry. Have a great weekend!

My heart soared. I'm still soaring. He wasn't falling asleep on the bus. He wasn't falling asleep at home (until later this afternoon anyway). He was listening and doing as asked the first (or maybe 2nd) time. He wasn't bouncing off the walls. He wasn't flipping all around on the furniture.

I asked him how he felt and he answered "happy". (I almost cried). I asked why. "Because my friends at school today, they played with me".

Do you know how long I've been waiting to hear this? A long freaking time.

If this is what "normal" is...I wish we could have found help a long time ago. I kept looking at him today and just wanted to hold him forever. My little boy.


Zachary's school, Dr, and stupid people

*sigh* It's been a long, emotionally difficult few weeks.

After just one week in school, we got the call that Zachary wasn't doing well in school. He was "bouncing off the walls". Really? I couldn't have predicted that when I spoke to the teacher BEFORE SCHOOL STARTED and asked for a meeting. But whatever. We met with the teacher, school counselor and school psychologist and I left with a really good feeling that we were all on the same page. Keep Zachary in a mainstream classroom, work to find things therapy-wise that might work for him in the classroom, and look to get a psychiatrist and behavioral therapist for outside the school.

One week later I got a frantic call that Zachary was out of control and they felt it might be best if he was pulled out and put into a special ed classroom. I asked what the classroom was like (because we're so not happy with his teacher that I might have considered it). She explained that its for children with behavioral issues and that there is a lot of aides and a small class size. I asked what the children were like in there...are they mentally handicapped? Physically handicapped as well? The answer I got floored me....she didn't know. She had never actually seen the room. Then why the HELL would you bring this up to me? We were very clear that we wanted him mainstreamed because he's soo smart that putting him in a room with children not his intellectual equal would be horrible for him. The psychologist then went on to explain that this is SERIOUS now and I need to see a pyschiatrist for him and we need to get him on meds...even if we had our pediatrician do it. I kinda lost it at that point. I was so upset and angry that we had been trying for YEARS to get someone to listen to us and find someone to help and all of a sudden I'm supposed to make this all happen overnight because it's hard for them? Please!! I also explained and still strongly feel this way that I will not have someone who is not a specialist in child psychiatry prescribing drugs to my child. Period. My pediatrician even said she didn't feel comfortable doing that or diagnosing him because she's not a specialist. I then spent a good hour on the phone with the insurance company. I HATE insurance companies. There is ONE psychiatrist in our local area that can see Zachary. One. Chuck calls them. It's a 2 1/2 month waiting list...and oh, wait. You're insurance is THAT? Sorry, our quota is full. I'm sorry. Chuck yells "HOW THE HELL DOES THAT HELP MY SON?" We're at our wits end. So we call another dr. in a different town furthur away...not till mid-December. So I said SCREW IT. Let's pay this out of pocket and see the most recommended and drive 1 1/2 hours to do it.

The day after all this...I go into the school to sign the papers to start an IEP. Miraclously nothing is as severe as it was the day before. Hmmm...and they didn't feel it necessary to start with an IEP before we saw the psych. And really didn't feel we should even consider a special ed classroom at this point. Nice.

Sooo...I get notes home almost daily about Zachary's bad behaviors. I got 2 home that were positive...one said GREAT DAY! and one said "more even. Better day today"...funnily enough the teacher forgot to mention that was also they day that they started the therapy in the classroom with the wiggle seat. Hmmm.

Fast forward to Tuesday: WE see the psychiatrist. We spend 2 1/2 hours in the office with her and another hour in between appts. Zachary was a little anxious... we could tell. She agreed that he has probable early-onset mood disorders and prescribed a medication for that. She also said that the ADHD is more prominant and we need to go back in two weeks for a check up and to start looking at stimulants for the ADHD.

I gave Zachary his first pill yesterday morning. AFter dropping off Luke, I ran up to Zachary's school...where I ran into the counselor and psychologist. Apparently, in the 1/2 hour that school started he'd alredy been in their offices. Nice. So we take a walk down to the gym where Zachary is. He's sitting by himself...not participating...looking so extraordinarily tired. His teacher spots me and makes mention that "this isn't Zach, Mom." I wanted to yell "HIS NAME IS ZACHARY!!" But I refrained. I explained that he started a new med and we need to know what they see, how he behaves, what issues they have. AFter school yesterday, he conked out on the 6 minute drive to the laundromat. He was like a different child...a zombie. I knew this could happen, I remember Chuck being completely out of it too. BUT....

What the HELL was I thinking giving my son an anti-pscyhotic that could leave him with nervous damage if left on long-term? Am *I* the one that's crazy? I want him to be socially acceptable...I want him to have self-esteem which he doesn't have right now because NO ONE wants to play with him...I want him to be successful in school but at what costs? I know Chuck wishes he had had something to help him while he was growing up..but will Zachary thank us one day? Or will he hate us for ruining his life? He's so out of it...he was asleep on the couch by 6:30 tonight!!! BUT he also had an AWESOME day at school and he was sooooooo proud of himself. He asked me how to spell out "I GET A FOR HAVING SUCH A GOOD DAY" and then made 3 smiley faces. He was so happy that he did well.....I just wish I KNEW that we were doing the right thing. I'm having issues saying that ppl shouldn't drug their kids to go to sleep but here I am drugging my baby so that he isn't argumentative and oppositional and hyper. I know, I know...and Chuck has told me yet again that we aren't doing this to make him less argumentative. We are doing this so that he can function. Focus. Think clearly. Function in a social capacity. But it's just so freaking scary.

I'm obsessing about it I'm sure. Goes with my anxiety issues I guess. I can't 100% control this and it's driving me freaking bonkers.

I've agreed to, and know in my head it's the best, to leave him on it for at least a week to see if it stabilizes itself or if the zombie-ness continues. It didn't with Chuck after 2 weeks. I think Zachary is happy that he can finally do what he wants to do and not be constantly trying so hard to hold himself together.

Oh, and about stupid people (besides his teacher). I HATE HATE HATE the people that are telling me "oh, have you ever thought about telling him NO and meaning it?" (Yes, I really did have someone tell me that). But also the people who believe it's all or nothing in regards to meds, diet modification, therapy, whatever. This is all a chemical thing. I HATE that people say they don't believe in ADHD or Bipolar. Come to my house. Spend a week with my 2 men for 24 hours a day. Don't look down your nose at me when you have absolutely no idea what I deal with.


complete randomness

* Tomorrow is Zachary's dr appt with the psychiatrist. I'm nervous. I'm scared. I'm hopeful too that maybe school will start going a bit better.

* School ISN'T going well for Zachary at all. He's being removed several times a morning from class, getting notes sent home daily. We're trying to limit his red dye and seen some decrease in his hyperactivity....or should I say we see an increase when he DOES get it.

* I think maybe I have problems with depression associated with my period. I just spent the last week not wanting to get out of bed at all. Not wanting to go to work, ever. Not wanting to talk to anyone or be active on my boards at all.

* I still don't want to go to work though. I hate it here. Luke doesn't help things at all when he cries because he wants me to eat dinner with them.

* I have a job. I'm happy about that because of our personal finances (Zachary's dr appts are being paid out of pocket). It looked like, for a while there, I may be layed off. Yea, the government was going to have a shutdown of all government services. Gotta love Michigan.

* I need to see a chiropractor. My hips are so badly off and I can barely walk in the mornings. Plus now my neck is killing me.

* Went camping this weekend with my parents, nephews and aunts and uncles. It was so much fun! But 90 degrees in October is a little crazy! We went swimming 2 days in a row! The boys were dying inside their costumes...and I didn't dare put E in her costume because it was meant for chilly weather being plush.

* I'm addicted to cloth diapers. There I've said it. I seriously want to try the minky diapers but can't see spending $25 for one. Maybe I'll talk my in-laws into buying some for E for Christmas.

* I need to lose weight. :( This is a NEED at this point. I got a lecture from my midwife a week or so ago. I gained 20 lbs since I had E....after losing 30. This just freaking sucks. I always seem to lose weight during my pregnancies and gain it all back afterwards. Why the hell am I backwards from everyone else? I really wonder sometimes if I don't have a hormonal imbalance or something.

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