April 27, 2006
School Days, School Days, Dear Old Golden Rule Days...
Haha! Now you too can have that song stuck in your head for the rest of the day. [grin]
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This is the time of year when everyone is looking at schools (unless you are happy with where your kid is already attending). We knew before we started checking around that our options would be limited, for the same reasons they were limited last year. Our daughter is just too far ahead of her age group and our county has age restrictions at every school (public and private).
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But we also knew that homeschooling wasn't really what we were looking for either. I have done a passable job this year, but her success is due to her determination and desire more than my planning and scheduling. She is the one who says, "Mommy, are we going to do schoolwork today?" every single day. It isn't me, planning and executing a well-thought-out educational plan for her. As a matter of fact, I'd have been better off buying an entire curriculum at the beginning of the school year and paying for the daily lesson assignment calendar as well.
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All that being said, I love having both my girls home with me. I love taking them to museums, the zoo, outings at the park, and basically being the primary teacher and caregiver to both of them. And I don't want to give that up. But I also know that we're doing her a disservice by maintaining my status as her teacher.
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So, I knew that whatever choice we made regarding her schooling had to be a fantastic one for her. The best available. Because to give up my role, it must really be a good move for her. And I believe we've found the best of both worlds. A challenging curriculum, geared directly to her abilities, a certified teacher planning her day, the flexibility for her to work at her own pace, and I get to be her primary day-to-day teacher. It sounds too good to be true. But the reality is it is going to be incredibly challenging for both of us.
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She will be attending a virtual public school, using the K12 curriculum. There is one issue, since they will be labeling her "1st grade", but that is easily overcome by the fact that her core classes will be geared to her ability - she has been assessed at the beginning of 4th grade level for language arts and 3rd grade for math. We are happy to have them start her with second grade math and reading (practice makes perfect, right?) and as she completes the lessons and masters skills for the other subjects, they are happy to move her forward, even in the middle of a school year. (They will never, however, label her the next grade level until the following school year).
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We realize that this is not a perfect system, since she will likely get to a point where the school cannot fit her needs (providing we decide to continue with this school after the 06-07 school year, we are taking this all one year at a time). But, we know that mainstream school won't fit her needs NOW. And even if she did have an option that suited her now in a mainstream school, it will likely not suit her down the road, the sponge that she is. But, we are confident that this is a wonderful opportunity for her.
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And I am happy that I will have the support I need to stay on track and the security in knowing that what I am teaching her each day is moving her forward in a logical and successful way. I know this is a fantastic solution for our family and I look forward to enrolling her sister for the 07-08 school year, and having the support I'll certainly need in teaching two girls at home. It is exciting and I know that seeing their progress is going to make the hard work that it will require (from all of us) worth it.
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You can check out the school here.
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April 26, 2006
The Worst Kind of News
We recently found that my father-in-law's heart failure is progressing rapidly. [He was diagnosed a year and half ago with viral cardiomyopathy. At the time of his dx, his heart function was at 20%. With meds, it increased to 33-34% in six months. Now, ten months after that, it is back down to 20%.]
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The cardiologist is not changing any of the treatment protocol, which is pretty bad news - basically there's nothing to be done. However, nobody else is willing to just throw in the towel, so together with his primary dr., they are trying to get a consult with another cardiologist to determine if there are other possible treatments.
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Realistically, we don't have much time left with him. Optimistically, 2 years will be great. The information we've read is not promising, so I've been limiting my google time - it is scary! what you find online about serious medical conditions.
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We're just praying that we all have the grace to deal with this as best as we can and to accept whatever God's will is. Until we know more, or have clear answers as far as the outlook for his health and future, we are just praying. And we plan on spending as much time as we can with him, for we know it will never feel like enough.
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Please pray with us for A's Dad and the rest of our family. I'll try to keep you posted.
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April 21, 2006
Have you seen my working shoulder?
If you have, please send it home. I've been missing it greatly. Been out of commission since I can type with only one hand. In a sling, tired of pain, it's making me crazy.
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I'd love to regale you with tales of the wonderful things going on in our lives right now, vacation plans and traveling galore, but one handed is tough and too time consuming for me now. I have to pack!
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Love to you and I hope I'll be in better form soon.
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Sending prayers up for all my pregnant friends, especially one internet acquaintance who found out last week that her precious child will never live in her arms or grow to be a spritely toddler or any of the rest of the stuff the rest of us take for granted.
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May you all have peace and joy and a blessed weekend!
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April 14, 2006
Good Friday
I've been very busy (what else is new?) this week. I went to the doctor to follow up on my shoulder and it turns out that I'm making it worse by not following instructions (read: I keep doing housework). I thought since there wasn't damage to the tendons that by continuing to do stuff would just prolong my recovery. But the dr. explained that the problem is not prolonging recovery, but the swelling can cause the bones to tear or fray the tendons, leading to permanent damage and the potential need for surgery. So, now I'm wearing a sling, except when I am doing my physical therapy.
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Holy Week is always busy with church and other things, so there's been that. And V had a couple classes at the kids' museum, so that's been taking up time as well.
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We have plans each day of this Easter weekend, and look forward to spending time with friends and family.
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May God Bless you abundantly this Holy weekend. And may the joy of the Resurrection permeate your lives this Easter season.
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April 09, 2006
A rare gem. This is the only way I can describe my beautiful friend, Cara.
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She knew I was having a rough week, with the anniversary of Pop's death and that my emotions kinda hit me like a ton of bricks this week. Even though she knew I would be busy for several hours on Saturday with a fundraiser for my church moms group, she decided that she'd load the kids up and make the 5 hour drive (plus stops) to visit us this weekend. She mentioned it Monday afternoon when I was venting a little about how I was feeling and that it is hard to believe it's already been a year and I've barely cried, though my heart feels physically bruised from the loss. She said, you know, we have some extra money and I could use it to pay for gas for a trip down this weekend....
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And there wasn't a more touching thing she could have done. But, she tried. Yesterday, while Adam and I had her daughter and our older one at the kids fair, she put little A down for a nap, cleaned my kitchen and folded mountains of our laundry. I can't tell you the overwhelming gratitude I felt when I came home and the mess in the kitchen was gone (I'd baked all day Friday and was cleaning as I went, but she cleared the counters! and scrubbed the sinks!) and the laundry that's been haunting me for weeks from within baskets (the physical therapist told me no folding laundry because the repetitive motion is causing swelling in my shoulder, so I am not healing) was folded neatly in piles on the loveseat and on my bed. She even washed the laundry that I had sorted to finish this weekend myself.
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I can't ever adequately thank her for her help this weekend. I wish she lived closer, not because I want her to do my laundry or clean my kitchen, but because just when she was here, I felt a peace that's hard to come by for me lately. An unconditional love and support that extends farther than I'd known.
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She arrived late Friday night and we stayed up past even later to chat and enjoy the quiet of the night. I was rushed the next morning in my efforts to gather my things and get out of here to help set up. I had a brief time when I was able to enjoy the fair with her and the kids before I had to report back to work at our booth. Then I came home and went in my bedroom and wept when I realized how much work she'd done - against my will (I had no idea). We loaded the kids into the van and headed to the pool for a couple hours in the late afternoon. How nice it was just to see the kids playing together (it'll be even more fun in a couple weeks when D joins them!). Cara was able to meet our friends here in the neighborhood, since they were also at the pool.
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We came home and I made an easy dinner and we were barely staying awake at 10:15, so we headed to early bed. And then the thunderstorms started rolling through about 2 am. And then at 5:30, the smoke detector went off (for no apparent reason). The morning came quickly and breakfast was finished too soon. Storytime was too short, it was time to say "See you soon". Soon isn't usually soon enough, but THIS time, soon is just as it should be - soon. And I can't tell you how happy I am to have had a day with my friend.
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Thank you, from the deepest part of my heart. I love you, Cara.
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April 07, 2006
No Time for Black Holes
So Busy here that I'm not gonna sleep tonight!!!! Must. Clean. My. House. I have a very exciting arrival tonight and my house looks like it was hit by a tornado. Yikes!
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I am baking and decorating 4 dozen cupcakes, 6-8 dozen brownies and 2-3 dozen rice crispy treats today for an event tomorrow.
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I just realized my kids have been in the bathtub for 25 minutes. Gotta go!
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Sending prayers and hugs to you all!
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April 03, 2006
Black Hole
It's like being sucked in and you didn't even know it was there..... All I did was met with my spiritual director (someone who I pray with and talk about things that are going on and she gives suggestions on specific things I could pray for, also she prays with me for healing of certain things in my life). On the way to meet with her, I was trying to clear my mind and think of what I might need to talk to her about (couldn't come up with anything)... I started talking about not having much to talk about, but then mentioned that the one year anniversary of Pop's death is upon us.
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While I have a great amount of comfort in knowing he is in heaven, there is a large part of my brain that realizes that I haven't probably grieved much. There were so many things to do right after his death - things to help my mom take care of, then of course, we moved again, then a near-nervous breakdown, and always taking care of my family..... And then the holidays..... and well, I suppose I never have given myself permission to really let go and crumble the wall I'd built up. This is somewhat frightening to me, as I have absolutely no interest in feeling emotionally raw, but I have a feeling to get past it, really get past it, that is going to have to happen. So, I'm praying for it. I don't know if I'm truly open to it, because when I'm praying, I think I'm saying the words without actually meaning them, but I figure if I say them enough than I'll become more comfortable with the idea of making myself vulnerable enough to just let it out.
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That being said, I have a fantastic post in the works complete with pictures commemorating our wonderful, busy week last week and the 4th birthday bash and subsequent festivities. I promise I will get it up within the next few days, and I also promise it will be worth the wait. ;) We had a fabulous time with the extra girls all week and I took some cute pictures out and about.
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Pray for my family, as the accident happened one year ago today, in 2 hours from now, precisely. And of course, tomorrow marks one year since Pop's bodily death.
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God is good and has given me a peace and the gift of knowing Pop is in heaven, but my heart still is having a hard time finally letting go.
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God Bless you.
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