Homework Troubles

A is a very smart boy. He reads above grade level and his math is at grade level. He has a vocabulary that often amazes me (with words like expression and conscientious) and he has a memory that would give most geniuses a run for their money.

After all the scares we had with A, I am so proud of all his accomplishments. I wasn't sure he would ever read - never mind above grade level. The last time he was evaluated we were told that he would probably have problems with math. While math is a harder subject for him he still does it and does it well.

Due in part to his ASD, he has issues with his motor skills. He lacks both fine and gross motor skills, therefore things that a "typical" 7 year old can do are harder for him. He can barely write his name (and it would be completely illegible to you), riding a bike is tough (he JUST started riding a two-wheeler with training wheels and still has spills) and he still runs like a toddler (with the waddle that shakes their whole back side).

On top of that, he has attention issues. He is so easily distracted that walking from the living room to the bathroom (all of 20 feet) can be hard for him to handle. It is so bad that he needs constant attention (leaving him alone for two minutes could account for videos being posted on Facebook - for those of you that do not have a Facebook account, he was able to record, save and publish a video of himself while I was watching Z walk to school the other day - , all the ice cream being eaten out of the freezer or his puppets being shown how the washing machine works).

For the past month or two I have been requiring him to do homework after school. I am hoping to help prepare him for the work he will be required to do next year (having been in kindergarten for 2 years the work load is familiar to him) and to help him gain some fine motor skills.

I haven't had a problem with him until the past two weeks. Now he flat out refuses to do it. As I mentioned, he has the attention of a field mouse, so this means I am sitting with him the entire time, walking him through each step of his homework and watching him scream every single step of the way...

We have tried reward systems (but a daily reward means he demands a daily reward for school work and a weekly reward is too far in the future for him), I have tried threats of death "groundation" (no TV or computer), I have tried reasoning with him...all to no avail. He will not do it.

Now I am at a loss. I will not give in to him (because who wins there??) but I am killing myself every afternoon to get it done. I am so frustrated from this afternoon's argument (when I gave in and told him I was done fighting with him) that I don't want to do it anymore and then the rest of our evening is shot because we are both so angry and frustrated. But, again, who wins?

Maybe 3 worksheets is too much and I need to work in some "play" time as well...maybe we need to take a break...maybe I need a full time tutor to come to my home and do this for me...maybe I should just give in and let him use a computer for the rest of his life (as he is more than capable of doing that as evidenced by the video)...

Educators, teachers, parents...I need your help! How do you motivate your children to work? How do you bring out their fullest potential? What have you done in times like this?


Ants In My Pants

All day I have felt like someone put itching powder in my panties...seriously.

Kirby even suggested that I picked up crabs from some sleazy public restroom (could have been...right, Nicki?).

Now I have realized what it is. The new body wash I used this morning. Not new, exactly, Kirby gave it to me for Christmas. But I tend not to use body wash that I am not use to, much less something that has perfume in it.

And now I remember why....


Webster's Dictionary defines productive as:

1. having the power of producing; generative; creative: a productive effort.
2. producing readily or abundantly; fertile: a productive vineyard.
3. causing; bringing about (usually fol. by of): conditions productive of crime and sin.

Sunday was an incredibly PRODUCTIVE day for me.

Three of the rooms in the house were cleaned (by threatening the children with death no TV or computer if they didn't finish it).

I learned new words (by playing Scrabble on Facebook all afternoon).

I made over $15,000 (by playing Texas Hold 'em on Facebook all afternoon).

I cleaned out my refrigerator (by eating all the food inside of it).

I cleaned out m cupboards (see above).

I took a shower (only after my own stench began to overwhelm me).

I made good conversation (mostly by internet chat).

I read a new book (or had it read to me by my 7 year old).

Laundry was cleaned (after I made a few nasty glances in Kirby's direction).

Groceries were bought (see above).

I ran a bath for the children (and ate dinner while they took it).

Children were put to bed (by threatening death computer and television loss).

Another rainy Sunday taken full advantage of by yours truly.

Call me lazy, I call it productive!

What did you do that was productive this weekend?


Thursday's Thankful Thirteen

Even during these crazy times, we have plenty to be thankful for!

1. I am thankful that Unemployment FINALLY sent out a check to Kirby. Over a month without his income has been tough.

2. I am thankful that spring seems to have FINALLY arrived. It is gorgeous out there today. A and I walked this morning and I didn't even need to wear a jacket.

3. I am thankful that, for the most part, A's homework has been going well and that, most nights, we don't fight too much about it.

4. I am thankful that Z was okay with not signing up for baseball this year. I'm not interested in all that goes with it (the money, the dedication, the tryouts, the small-town coaches and parents).

5. I am incredibly thankful that Nicki and Rich are coming down tomorrow and we get to meet up with them! I haven't seen them since June (although Nicki and I rarely go three days without talking and always have a, seemingly, never-ending game of Scrabble going).

6. I am thankful that we were able to spend A's birthday with my wonderful family. This is the first time all my siblings were together since my niece's homecoming (which is rare for us).

7. I am grateful that my most amazing family got A a new bike for his birthday. This is his first two wheeler (with training wheels). While we have had a few crashes it has not been anything too seriously (at least according to Kirby or myself - if you ask A he will tell you that he needs to "go to the hospital" or we need to "call and ambulance").

8. I am grateful for two new regular clients over the past couple weeks. The economy isn't killing everyone...yet.

9. I am grateful that I was able to spend a little while with the newest addition to the family, baby Marian, at Andrew's party. She sat with me and we played...it was heaven!

10. I am grateful for the two BINGOS I got on Facebook Scrabble this week. Cheesy, you say? My blog - my gratitude! BINGOS are hard to come by - I take every one I can!!

11. I am a little grateful that I am going to get my brows waxed tomorrow. This is only a small amount of gratitude because I HATE doing it but I know if I don't I will look like Beaker with the uni-brow.

12. I am grateful for my "new" laptop. My girlfriend upgraded and gave me her old one and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! I love that I am typing this while I am sitting on my bed waiting for A to go to sleep...

13. I am thankful that Z has made a great friend. I always worry about the friendships he is forming and his socialization (and he's the "normal" kid). He and his friend E have been spending nearly every weekend together and I really like this boy.

What are you thankful for this Thursday?


One of THOSE days

Have you ever had one of those days? The days that every single little thing grinds your nerves so hard that you want to scream? Yeah, THOSE days. I am having one...

Z is going through a bag of clothes a friend of mine handed down to him and he feels the need to pose in every-single-thing...including each winter hat and mitten set. Cute most days...today I am annoyed.

Kirby was watching Home Improvement earlier (while searching the web for job possibilities) and laughing at the most ridiculous things. Great that he was having a good time...down right annoying to me.

A isn't doing his work in school. Most days I would chalk that up to a typical "autistic moment". Today I forced him to do the work he was supposed to do at school AND his homework and re-write anything that wasn't "perfect" - meaning something that actually resembled the "A" he was supposed to be writing.

I have sent 3 emails today minus the attachments they were supposed to have. That's always fun (expecially when you are emailing people that you don't even know - way to make a first impression).

Every time I hear, "hey Mom" I cringe a little bit....

It is one of those days that my children should be thankful I don't use corporal punishment...

And I'm not even PMSing.


And you thought yesterday was TMI

I stole this from Mama Kat (see her listed on my sidebar - I'm too lazy to link right now):

Would you do crystal meth if it were legalized?

That's a big fat NO.

Abortion, for or against?

Is anybody really FOR abortion? I think you can be pro-choice and not FOR abortion. It's not like I stand outside the local OB-GYN office and encourage women to go get an abortion.

So, not for me but I can understand why some women do it.

Would the country fall if there was a woman president?

Are we talking Hillary, cause I'm not so sure...

But seriously, gender doesn't determine whether you can handle the job or not. I think there are plenty of men that the country would fall under.

Do you believe in the death penalty?

I do but would never want to be a member of the jury deciding it.

Do you wish marijuana was legalized?

I don't really care. I don't WISH it would be legalized but it wouldn't bother me if it was.

Do you believe in God?

Yes. God and I have our issues but I do believe there is some supreme being that gives me my yeast infections to test my strength and my kids to test my patience and learn unconditional love...

Do you think same sex marriage should be legalized?

Absolutely. Who am I to determine whether love is real or not? Who am I to determine whether you are worthy of receiving the same benefits I am? What makes my marriage any more real than yours?

Do you think it's wrong so many Hispanics are moving to the USA?

I think they want what we have and who can blame them?

A 12 year old girl has a baby...should she keep it?

There is nothing you can say that could convince me this would be okay. NOTHING. There are plenty of 32 year old women that shouldn't be allowed to keep their children (and one would hope that they have learned responsibility in their lives)...there is no way a 12 year old can handle the responsibility - I don't care who she is.

Should the alcohol drinking age be lowered to 18?

No but the age where you can join the military and fight (and die) for our country should be raised to 21.

Should the war in Iraq be called off?

I don't think you CAN call it off now. I think we need to do exactly what we are doing. Concentrate on Afghanistan, scale down in Iraq and get out as soon as possible.

Assisted suicide is legal...do you agree?

I do for terminal illness. I am sure there are other cases you could convince me on as well. If someone I loved was in that much pain that they wanted to die I would do everything in my power to help them.

Do you believe in spanking your children?

I believe you have the right, yes. I believe it doesn't work. I also believe that the threat is enough to get Andrew to stay in bed most nights.

Would you burn the American flag for a million dollars?

There are few things I wouldn't do for a million dollars. Seriously. Burning the flag is one of the things I would not hesitate doing, wouldn't even feel badly about it. Especially if it was one of those "American" flags that are actually made in China.

A mother is declared innocent after murdering her 5 children in a temporary insanity case...what do you think?

I think insanity is the only thing that makes sense.



I am sure you all are just dieing to hear this, so I will forewarn you, there is a bit of TMI in here but I just need to get it off my chest.

I think that yeast infections are God's way of seeing what kind of limits you can be pushed to. I think it is his way of testing your strengths and seeing how far you will go...

Having said that, if I have not proven myself by now I am terrified of what his next test of strengths may be.

I have, yet another, yeast infection. It's not like I have these once a week but often enough. I am so sick and tired of them.

When I was pregnant with Andrew I had a never ending cycle of them. I had a bacterial infection that I treated that then turned into a yeast infection (cause an antibiotic kills ALL bacteria including the good stuff that eats yeast) and he cycle continued until I gave birth.

I have also decided that there is nothing more erotic than cottage cheese and burning itchies. I know - the gross factor just jumped about 100 feet. Seriously though, Kirby is STILL not working (not for lack of trying), my schedule is not a jam packed (due to both the economy and the season...give me a couple months)...why not take advantage of it? Well, GOD had different ideas.

I know there are a number of contributing factors. My diet is not great (something that has only gotten worse since Kirby has been home - EVERY DAY, ALL DAY for OVER A MONTH), I am not getting as much exercise (I was walking to work for a while but now they are doing road work and the road I use to get there is closed) and my stress level is a little high (have I mentioned that Kirby has been home FOR OVER A MONTH?!?!). So those are things I need to work on.

In the meantime, if you have any natural advice, that doesn't include something oozing out of me for the next four days, I will gladly accept it.

Have I disgusted you enough for a Monday afternoon??


Happy 7th to my "baby"

It is hard for me to believe that 7 years ago today my youngest baby was born.

Andrew has not been an easy child. He has been sick since he day he was born, seen more doctors than I have seen in my life, had more surgeries than I...

I wouldn't change it for the world.

He is my perfect child.

In the past year he has learned so much. Today he was riding a two wheeler (with training wheels) with no problems. He is currently on the computer playing with his new Webkinz and navigates around the internet better than most adults. Yesterday he was sitting on the couch reading one of my books (I don't joke, he was reading it). He has gotten so big.

I am so proud of my baby!!
Happy Birthday Big Boy!


Guess where I am...

Did you guess? Any ideas?

Well, I'll tell you...

I am sitting on my couch, typing away with my "new" laptop. This is so awesome.

I know, you all are probably like "what is she talking about". You see, I have NEVER had a laptop. I have NEVER had any piece of computer equipment that was ALL MINE. NEVER.

Everything I own is attached to someone else in this home is some way, shape or form. If I want to use the computer it usually means fighting someone else in the house for it. If I want to watch TV, again, I am fighting someone else for it. And even my books, as I type, Andrew is reading one of MY books. Yes, he is 7...

Hoping to get back to all my bloggers over the next couple days. For now, I am downloading Itunes and enjoying checking in on facebook without hearing the kids whine about wanting to go to Webkinz...



I don't know if the computer is fixed. We have done everything but hit it with a hammer to try and get it back to normal...here's hoping we don't have to resort to that technique.

So now that the computer is (hopefully) back to normal, will I be able to blog on a more regular basis? Who knows. It has been so long since I have blogged and checked in on my blogging fellows...again, here's hoping.

In the past few months I have come to some realizations. Not necessarily good ones...

First off, as I have mentioned in the past, Facebook and MySpace feed drama. Someone commented on that post that she only accepts friend requests from people that she would sincerely like meeting for lunch with. Since that post I have done a lot of thinking about it, about why it is important for me to keep a Facebook account (since I have cancelled MySpace).

I have realized that if I haven't spoken with you in 10 years there is probably a reason for it. I am not saying it is my reason (it could very well be your reason) and I am not saying there are not exceptions to the rule. But, for the most part, if I didn't care enough to search you out between high school and now...well...I don't really care all that much.

I have realized that people who shut you out because of a misunderstanding never really cared about you to begin with. I know, I have done it. Since it happened to me, I came to the conclusion that this person never really cared to begin with AND that the person I did it to...well...I never really cared about them either. That's a tough one.

I have realized that Kirby and I work much better TOGETHER when we are not...meaning not together for 24 hours a day 7 days a week. You see, Kirby got laid off over a month ago and has yet to find anything. I love him, he loves me. I need time. He is driving me nuts. He intentionally does things to drive me crazy. He touches me. Not in that, "oh it is so nice to have someone show affection" touch...in that "MOM, HE'S TOUCHING ME AGAIN" way. Argh! Someone, anyone, please help me. He needs to work. I need him to work. Right now, he is throwing a pillow at me..over and over and over again. Seriously, people, take pity on me!!

A little deep for my first real post in months. I hope to be back with some nice fluffy posts soon enough! Till then...


Mother of Pearl!

Doesn't seem like anything is going right lately. I am typing this and PRAYING it actually gets posted...you see, my computer BITES. I don't know what is going on but pages, if they load, take about 10 minutes. I am expecting to get a new laptop this weekend (well, new to me, not NEW though). Here's hoping I can actually get back to blogging (and everything else I do on the internet) soon enough...