Sunday, September 15, 2019

busy busy

So the other day after I posted I kind of stalked some of the blogs I followed.  I didn’t leave any comments yet.  More or less it was just seeing which blogs were still active.  Most of them were which a pleasant surprise was.  

This past week was a bit crazy.  It seems as though things are more hectic than usual.  Princess Bear (PB) has just started physical therapy a few times a week for her scoliosis.  As it turns out the scoliosis has made it so her hips are uneven.  That paired with the fact that low muscle tone is a contributing factor to her frequent falls.  I’m also in physical therapy.  A few months ago I saw the Dr for some severe pain in my back and arm.  One MRI later I found out that I have severe arthritis in my spine as well as spinal stenosis.  Frankly I think I’m too damn young to have to deal with this but my body doesn’t give a damn!  I have received several epidural c spine pain injections.  They do work but the pain always returns.  I’m hoping that PT will help me build up some strength in my neck so movement isn’t so painful.  So in additional to our normally busy lives we have added for extra appointments a week.  Hopefully we see some great results from PT and can move on to a home program before too long. 

This weekend was a great one in terms of being a Chicago sports fan.  The Cubs have had a few outstanding games against the Pirates which has been fun to watch.  Rizzo hurt himself today some I’m really hoping it’s not so bad that he’s out for the rest of the season.  The Bears pulled off a last second win against the Broncos so the sports g-ds have smiled down!  Usually weekends for us have a relatively set routine and are pretty low key.  This weekend was my birthday as well as my friend Rachel’s wedding.  It was nice to have the change of pace.  The only downside was trying to wrap up PBs homework on a Sunday night.  I’ve now realized how much algebra I don’t remember and how much you really never need it in the real world!  Hope you had a great weekend!

Friday, September 6, 2019

Hey there!

Yep….I’m back!  Awhile back I looked at the blog and saw how much time had passed and I thought I wanted to pick it up again.  SO much is going on and it’s a great way to document life.  Of course it’s also cheaper than therapy.  I’d say that was about 4 months ago.  Instead of jumping back in I decided to really give it some thought and make sure that returning was what I really wanted to do.  It kept on popping into my head and I decided that I’d return mid-November. I didn’t randomly pick mid-November rather that is when the Craft & Vendor sale that I’m a co-chair for is held.  That sucker is a very time consuming activity so I wanted to wait until after.  Then my co-chair & I decided to step down since the board of the group that benefits from the craft & vendor sale are….. Well let’s make that an upcoming post!

Time sure has flown and Princess Bear (PB) has really flourished in high school.  Overall high school has been a much better experience.  She’s made some really great friends & I adore most of them.  She’s part of several after school activities including Best Buddies, All about Animals club, the Art Club and Madrigals.  She’s also grown into an incredibly sassy teenager.  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised since she is my kid!

As for me I’m still just doing my thing.  The Craft & Vendor sale kept me busy for several months of the year.  I’m still enjoying all of my arts and crafts.  I decided that PB & my nephews needed cross stitched ornaments so I’ve been working on those.  I’m also spending time making wreaths.  I’m considering turning that into a side business. 

That’s the short version.  I’ll post more again soon!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

First day of High School

Oh my goodness!  Where did the summer go?  Where has time gone in general?  My baby started High School today!  Princess Bear (PB) started high school today.  I'm so not ready for this although she seems to think she is!  We had to have an IEP meeting last week to change the track that PB is enrolled in.  Previously we had followed the advice we were given and signed PB up for a life skills program.  She wouldn't have received a diploma at the end of her four years but I wasn't hung up on that.  PB will never hold any kind of job where that will make a difference.  Then a few weeks ago PB and I met her 8th grade teacher for coffee.  She then told me that she didn't think PB was in the right program.  She thought PB should be in something called Core.  That is a diploma program but the classes are a bit slower than regular high school classes.  I called PBs new coordinator and asked for her opinion.  She thought that having a meeting with the school psychologist, the life skills teacher and her counselor would be a good idea.  At that meeting I was told that PBs reading and comprehension skills scores are 20 points higher than what you would typically see in a life skills program.  Her math and science skills are lower but it was still decided that it would be easier for her to go down to an easier level if Core didn't work for her than it would be to work into a harder level if life skills was too easy. 

We also had to write an appeal to get PB into the school she's going to.  We'd been promised that she was going to go to Richwoods with her classmates.  This group of kids have been together since they were 3 years old.  Then part way through last year they tried telling us that there was a comparable program at our home school (based on boundaries).  The school they wanted to send her to is a gang infested cesspool.  My child was not going to go there.  Our boundary waiver request was granted which is completely awesome.  There is just one significant downside.  There is no air conditioning in this school that PB is at and they don't have to follow the IEP to put it in since she could go to her home school that is air conditioned.  We bought enough small desk sized fans that PB can keep a fan in each classroom as well as a ton of cooling clothes.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that its enough.

I am the first to admit that I was a nervous wreck at just the prospect of PB starting high school.  PB was overall pretty excited.  She even picked to have her braces bands be her new school colors.  I spend a lot of the summer talking to her about choosing her friends wisely and letting her know that her fellow students can be idiots and to just ignore them.  I'm sure that the entire year won't be this smooth but today went really well!  PB graduated with 5 other kids in her schools special ed program last May.  5 of the 6 kids, PB included are in the Core program.  She has at least 1 class with every one of her classmates.  She also made a new friend.  She can't remember his name.  She thinks its Travis but she's going to find out for sure tomorrow.  Anyway this kid is her new pal.  They have 3 classes together, the same lunch period and their lockers are next to one another!  She came bopping out of school with a hug smile on her face and was excited about the whole experience.  I'm thrilled for her! Now I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this year is relatively smooth sailing! 

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


Wow!  I can't believe I haven't been on here in more than 2 months!  I know that I've mentioned before that summertime is super busy for us and this year has been no exception.  Princess Bear (PB) has Camp Creativity at Michael's on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  She has swimming lessons on Tuesday and Thursday.  Youth group on Sunday nights and Bible study on Wednesday nights.  There's also 4H and she was a crew leader at Vacation Bible school this year.  She loved that!  I volunteered in the nursery at VBS...let's just say it was interesting!

The thing is that I didn't come here to do a state of the summer address.  I wanted to share a slide show from PB's graduation and award ceremony.  So without further ado.....

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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

End of the year hussle

Why is it that the end of the school year seems so chaotic nowadays?  I remember when I was in school that the last few weeks were kind of chill and fun.  Wrapping things up and getting the school ready to be closed up for the summer.  It seems like things have been in serious crunch time with Princess Bear (PB).  Lots of end of the year testing, finishing up IEP goals,  finishing AR books so that the total number of books read for the year looks good and a few projects to boot.  

Now I will say that I had a lot of fun working with PB on her last social studies project.  It's always kind of irritated me that the kids were allowed to throw together any kind of accompanying poster for the project and it was good enough.  I'm a scrapbooker at heart so it kind of pained me to see a picture printed off, sloppily cut and slapped down.  For her last social studies project PB had to base  it off of her birthday.  Her birthday is June 11, 2003.  So she had to have her birthday on there, as well as a famous person born on her birthday and then 3 domestic things and 3 global things that happened on June 11 (2003 wasn't a prerequisite for those).  They started to research the project at school.  PB turned in a list of 5 things claiming she couldn't find another that happened on June 11.  Her teacher had supposedly read through it and ok it.  One small problem.  Two of the events weren't even for June 11th!!!! wtf!  So I helped PB do some more research and find the appropriate amount of events.  Then we got to take a trip to Michaels.  PB lives by the theory of the more it sparkles the better it is.  She decided on a gold and white theme.  We went slightly crazy buying stuff but had a grand time!  I then typed up the wording for the poster board and PB cut out the card stock that we were using as frames.  I really wish I had a picture of it.  The kid did a great job cutting and then putting everything together.  I think now that she realizes that she can have some fun on her projects that she won't go back to the print and slap on method. 

PB also had her last choir concert.  PB loves choir and has an amazing voice.  She really lets go singing when she things no one can hear her!  It's just beautiful and she obviously didn't get it from me.  Unfortunately the wonderful choir teacher from last year retired.  She was actually going to give PB lessons but wound up traveling a lot with her husband.  She did a wonderful job of incorporating the special needs kids into the Flyer Choir which is the 7th and 8th grade choir.  She gave the special needs students all the same opportunities as the other children.  They were allowed to go on the special field trips to sing in the community and they were able to enter the grade school choir competition for the entire district.  Last year PB gave serious thought to entering the district wide competition and the choir director at the time offered to meet with her after school to get ready.  Then PB decided that she just wasn't ready to get up on stage and sing by herself so she decided to wait until her 8th grade year.  Well the man that took over as the choir director this year constantly shortchanged the special needs kids.  He would only let them perform with the 5th and 6th grade choir.  That meant that they were not allowed to go on community singing trips or enter the district wide competition.  I was less that happy with the choir director all year.  Then last week at the last concert of the year he somehow decided that the 5th and 6th grade students as well as the special needs students didn't need to have their names printed in the program.  The 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grade band and orchestra members were listed.  The 7th and 8th grade Flyer Choir members were listed.  The entire back side of the program was blank and could have been used to list the other kids but nope.  I saw one mom try to talk to the choir director before the concert and he blew her off and said it could be discussed after the concert.  After the concert my sister tried talking to him.  She actually started out pretty polite.  That is until he doubled down and maintained he did nothing wrong and was a complete jerk.  After that my sister unloaded on him.  I so wish I could have done it myself but since I'm still fighting to get PB into a better high school I'm trying to not rock the boat.  I did however bring up the situation to the PTA president who was horrified.  She's one of those ladies that gets things done so I'm sure it won't happen again.

There's also a book fair at the school every fall and spring and the librarian always asks me to help.  I couldn't help at the fall book fair because I was in the hospital post hysterectomy.  The librarian is a super nice lady and I love helping out.  PB and I are both book works so it gives me a chance to scope out new books for PB.  The sad part is that we have to watch the kids because inevitably some of the "fun" items like erasers, bracelets and bookmarks are always stolen.  How sad and ridiculous is that????  Working at the book fair this year I met a really awesome lady named Tracy.  Have you ever met someone and just been like this is a kindred spirit?  Since I don't have a lot of PB free time friendships are somewhat hard to maintain so it was kind of cool to meet someone that I could chill and talk to.

The fight to get PB into the high school that she had been promised for the last 3.5 years is ramping up.  The school waiver forms had to be filled out this past Friday by 4pm.  The only available option to get PB into Richwoods (the school she'd been promised) is to have her be in Junior ROTC.  Well that can't happen but I was told to still fill out the form and use the one blank space to explain the situation.  So I did that.  I also had my letters for the Director of Special Education as well as the Academic Instructional Officer (why he needs to be in the loop I have no idea but that is what I was told to do) and in addition to my letter I had letters from her pediatrician and therapist stating that it is essential for PBs mental well being that she be allowed to continue on with the same group of students she's been with since preschool.  I tried delivering the letters in person.  After waiting for more than an hour I was told that neither person was in the building and I could leave the letters.  I was so pissed off.  I damn near had a panic attack just dropping off the letters.  I was less than happy to be screwed around.  It takes more than an hour to figure out that people are out of the building?  Please. 

So that has been life around here.  Well that as well as learning that I'm allergic to a lot of stuff but that's going to be its very own post.  I'm going to sign off and watch the season finales of Scorpion and NCIS.  Night y'all!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Not dead yet

There's been more and none of the above list was in chronological order.  I can honestly say that I missed the blog and blogging as well as checking in with those whose blogs I follow.  I can also say that the break was very necessary.  My mom breaking her foot at the holidays really threw a wrench in things but we survived it quite well.  Adopting a puppy (she was 10 weeks old when we brought her home) was quite the change.  The last time we'd had a puppy I was in high school and got a puppy as my 16th birthday gift.  There is something to be said for having one dog to train the new one!  My cousins death really threw me for a loop for so many reasons.  He was 4 years younger than I am and had been healthy before this whole nightmare started.  He was incredibly full of life and the father of 3 young children.  It was so very hard to see my Aunt, Uncle and cousins go through this horrible ordeal. 

Through all of this Mason has been absolutely incredible.  The man can drive me absolutely crazy inside 3 seconds but he is always there for me.  He's even kind of talked me into moving to Colorado at some point in time.  There was no way that I could be ok with the idea of living in California and for reasons that I'm not really sure I understand he doesn't want to consider Illinois.  He really wants to go back to Colorado.  I can't say I hate the idea.  I just wish the town he wanted to go to was bigger.   I'm a city girl at heart.  I want to be close to a city and that isn't going to happen if/when this move takes place. 

I could probably babble on for awhile longer but it's 1:40am and I have an early Dr's appointment.  I just needed to get a post under the proverbial belt so I can get back into the swing of things.