Friday, June 29, 2012

Adaptive behavior

Yesterday I had an I-cant-take-it-one-more-second moment with my hair that was way overdue for a trim.  My fav hair stylist wasn't available on 20 hours notice, so I booked with the lady next to her. As soon as I hung up, I thought I'd go out on a limb and call back to see if I could also bring Caitlin.  Caitlin's last haircut was at Dworld, and while it was fun and cute, it was also crooked. very.  It's been bothering me for the past4 months, but I haven't been very compelled to do much about it because every single haircut she's ever received has been pretty crooked.  I kind of gave up.  But, I got an uncharacteristic burst of optimism, and asked for Caitlin to come with me.

When I got home yesterday afternoon from work, I was excited to share with Caitlin that we'd get a girls' afternoon together the following day and yay, what fun.  She was not thrilled.  She did not want her hair cut. We talked for a while and she came around, but was very clear that she just wanted her hair evened out.  Fine with me--me too.

So, fast forward to the next day (today) and I was just getting home from taking Nora to a routine doctor's appointment.  Caitlin was happily ready to go to the hair salon when I returned home.  Usually I have to push and prod her to move along in order to leave the house, but she was definitely on board and ready to roll.  She grabbed a stuffed puppy she had just crafted that morning with my mom and hopped in the car.

Caitlin is very shy around new people and new situations, so we've been talking and preparing for stuff like this.  While we were in the car on the way to get our hair cuts, I was asking her questions about how she would respond when she was asked how she wanted her hair cut.  I was reminding her to make eye contact (she is supposed to report back to me about her eye color at the end of this) and to speak audibly.  In contrast to the usual "I know, I know, mom" eye-roll, sigh, today I caught her through the rearview mirror with a sneaky grin on her face.  "I wrote her a note already," she told me, proudly, "since I'm always so shy."  After inquiring about it, she read it to me...and I just died.  First of all, because:
Dear Brber Shop.
 and then:

Hi, My Name is Caitlin. I just want my hair cut strate. Thank you!!

 Amen, sister! I just want your hair cut strate as well!
And second of all, she didn't mention this to John or my mom, whom she was with all morning.  She must've been thinking a lot about needing to talk to an unfamiliar person and worried.  Do fears like this work themselves out with continued socialization and maturity, or how do I help her? I'm sad that she is plotting how not to have to talk to people.  So, that'll give me something to read about this weekend.

In the end, the new hair stylist, Ashely, was this lovely, soft-spoken young lady.  Caitlin took right to her and completely forgot about the note.  She left the waiting area (which was about 8 feet from where my chair was) and sat in the empty chair next to me, so that she could be with us.  She chatted up Ashely the whole time.  When it was her turn, she declared that she wanted her hair cut short.  Was she sure? YES!   I sat back and caught up on Hollywood gossip in the waiting area and the two girls hung out and talked the whole time.  Caitlin LOVED the whole thing.  She felt really special.

On the way home, she said she felt good because she was sure that Ashley was her kindergarten teacher's daughter since her name was Ashley and she had dark hair.  I'm not so sure, but whatever works.

Monday, June 18, 2012

New Beginnings

Nora and Ryan's first day of preschool was today.  An incredible amount of preparation has gone into this in the weeks and months leading up to today... not to mention the 5 hours of shopping and list-making and email-sending and organizing that occurred yesterday afternoon.

John dropped them off today since I have to work for a living.  Last night I set out bags of back-up clothes, health forms/registration forms/emergency forms/sunscreen forms/parent agreement forms, swim suits/towels/water shoes (today was weekly water day), nap bedding and lovies, Ryan's special drink, lunches, clothes for today and probably some other stuff.  And I whined and complained that I wouldn't be able to see them off to school. Caitlin, by the way, is doing "day camp" at the same school--but of  course, she is in the elementary class now.  So, everyone was so excited to all be in the same school.

John dropped them off, had some discussions with their teacher (I've met with her 2-3 times leading up to this--mainly about Ryan's food stuff) and went to the gym this morning...and made a bet with himself about how long it would take me to call and ask how things went (I called at 10am) and how many times I would try to call him while he was at the gym (2 calls, 1 text).  I was thinking of them all day.   The director of the center emailed me in the afternoon to say that her daughter and Caitlin were playing all day together and that Nora and Ryan fit right in and were having a blast.  John replied  back to my text: "everything was great."  This is not that much of a thing for him, I guess.

When we had a nanny for the last 2+ years, I got a daily report of what Ryan ate and drank and other important things that we keep track of--today, I get nothing.  Ryan reported that he had a great day--yes, he liked school--kids threw water at him during water play--he did not do fingerpainting--he ate 2 bites of lunch (ugh--my whole worry about this is that he won't eat).  Nora reported that she had a great day--she played with her teacher--she has new friends but can't remember their names--she loved nap time--she loved snack time.  There were no accidents of the potty-kind, nor any other type.

They are excited for Day2 on Wednesday.
So, success!  This is a big milestone as we've been hoping to get to this point for the last 2 years.  Our prayer is that Ryan can continue to gain weight. 

Also, i can't figure out how to get the text alignment right. oh well. sorry.

Saturday, June 9, 2012


 Last week, I gave birth to this beautiful baby girl:

Yesterday, she was getting so big! Playing in the sandbox and coloring and talking and walking!

And then 5 minutes ago she started Kindergarten

And now...

 she is done with kindergarten.
 When? How?  I cannot believe how fast the years have gone.  Whoever said--the days are slow, but the years rush by--was so right.  She has done amazingly well--meeting new friends, enjoying learning, loving school.  She is bright in so many ways, and so so full of love.  Congratulations, big girl!

Here are some other pictures that capture the end of the year:
A note to her teacher: I love Kindergarten because I loved doing hard, hard math like you give us.  What I loved fun was subtraction.  I love you because you love to laugh and you are a fun teacher.  The most important thing about you is you got to be my teacher. I had the most fun with Heads Up Seven Up.  My favorite memory of this year is my first day of school.  I will remember you for the rest of my life because you were my first teacher.

 End of the Year Program
Class of 2024

Getting her certificate from her amazing teacher