Friday, 30 November 2012

Reason to Celebrate

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas . . .  here at Shenanigans Inc, and this is even early for me.  I can't help it, though, I am so excited for Christmas!  I think it's because I am utterly done with 2012 and want to throw it one rock'n farewell party.  2012 has not been kind to my little family.  We kicked the year off with this major disappointment, followed that up with this life-changing diagnosis, then there was yet another heartbreak, some terribly sad news, and, finally, we wrapped up our year with this very difficult trial.  Not to mention, two weeks ago we learnt that our brother-in-law, Jeremy, who is married to Mr. Level-Headed's sister and lives in Utah, was just diagnosed with Leukaemia and is currently undergoing chemotherapy.  Please keep them in your prayers.

Sheesh!  Who put the hex on the Webster family?

Anyhoo, I am so done with 2012, and I am ready to move onto a bright, happy, streets-are-paved-with-gold 2013!  Ya, got that Fate?  Good.

To kick off our Farewell to 2012 festivities, the boys and I have been decorating for Christmas and blasting the Christmas tunes.  We are having so much fun, and we are jumping for joy that the Christmas season is finally upon us.

Hip, hip, hooray!

I love the fact that my boys have been wearing their Santa hats all week.

Awww . . . my Christmas cactus!

Good ol' Santy Claus.  Ya gotta love, Christmas!  What other time of year would I ever let something like this adorn my walls and absolutely love it?  

This is the best Christmas decoration EVER.  My children have been advised that it is directly connected to the North Pole, and when it says "Nice", Santa Claus is happy.

But, when it says "Naughty", you are in deep trouble.  Avery nearly threw up when I flipped it to take this picture . . . . muwahahaha . . . I love this kind of power!

Our Christmas stories, which we have already began reading.

Santa Claus bringing gifts to Baby Jesus because, according to Avery, the other guys are only bringing frankincense and myrrh.  Who needs that stuff?  Jesus needs real presents . . . tee hee! I love that kid!

And, finally, our mini-Christmas tree adorned with an adorable new star, which I made on a whim while enjoying my after-run buzz yesterday.  

Christmas is in the air, and I couldn't be more pleased.  Tomorrow we kick off our count down to the big day with our Advent Scripture Chain and some little surprises for the kiddos.  This is really shaping up to be the best Christmas ever here at Shenanigans Inc.!  

And in the words of the lovely Miss Taylor Swift, 2012 we are NEVER, EVER getting back together!  Don't let the door hit you on your way out.  :)

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Operation Kick Some Butt

Whose butt needs kicking you ask?  Well, yours truly of course.  Yes, I need a major butt kicking, and I need it fast.  I have not gone for a run in six weeks now.  Eeeeek!  I am so bad.  At around the same time I started blogging again, I began to skip out on my morning runs.  It's like I can't seem to squeeze in more than one of hour of "me" time during the day, but this has to change.  I really don't want to stop blogging, but I really can't go on without exercise, and doing both is possible.  It will just take better time management on my part and lots of discipline, something I was not blessed with.  So, here's the deal:  I continue to write somewhat decent musings on my life, my babies and my grand ideas, and YOU kick my butt.  Yes, I am giving you permission to harass me, to motivate me, and to scream at me via whatever way works best for you.  Send me a tweet, a FB post (no direct messages please because they are far too easy to ignore; not that I would ever do that), or a text.   If you see me running alongside the road, holler out your window: "Go faster, girl!  Move it!"  If you see me out and about, ask me if I exercised today, and if not, feel free to berate me in front of everyone.  If you are my cousin and work at a certain ice cream establishment, which I frequent far too often, do not serve me. Shut the window and tell me to come back after I have done my thirty minutes.  Yep, that's my goal right now:  I must move for thirty minutes each day, except for Sunday, my day of rest.  Sundays have just become exponentially better in my eyes!  This is an intervention, folks, so don't hold back.  Let me have it!  Oh, but to my dear Mr. Level-Headed, you are not invited to our little butt-kicking party.  Sorry!  Remember, we have a deal.  Life is much more pleasant for both of us when we don't work on home reno projects together and when you don't comment on my lack of self-discipline.  Right?  Love ya, babe!

  I know we can do this.  I am lacing up my sneakers, grabbing a toque, and running out the door.  You, my friend, must now leave me a butt-kicking message.  Come on!  It will be fun.  You can vent all your pent up frustration at me.  Think of all those times I have posted my cutesy little craft ideas, made you suffer from scrolling through a gazillion of my family photos just to read my annoying tee hee!  at the end, or have lead you to believe that life is nothing but bliss here, a ferry crossing away, when you know darn well my dishes are not done, I have not showered in a week, and my kids should be on the next episode of Feral Children.  I am utterly annoying, and you know you want to scream at me, so do it.  Don`t hold back; KICK MY BUTT!

Me, and my grand ideas . . . tee hee! I can almost feel Mr. Level-Headed shaking his head at this one.  :)

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Housewife Alchemy: Turning the Mundane into Meaningful

I have had many emails and phone calls this week inquiring about how Zoe is doing, and I am happy to say she is healing!  Remicade, which is the new drug she is on, seems to be living up to its outlandish, retail price, and she is back to school, bogged down with assignments, and loving every minute of it . . . NOT!   Thank you everyone for your prayers, your positive energy, and your well wishes.  Knowing that so many people care for and love our family, gave us strength and helped us to face this trial with courage, hope, and faith.  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

For us, this has been a week of getting back into routines and healing.  Spending ten days in the hospital, albeit able to go back and forth on pass, helped me to better appreciate my run-of-the-mill life .  Being a homeschooling, stay-at-home mom is surprisingly not that glamorous or exciting . . . tee hee!  I spend my days teaching, cleaning, cooking, loving and creating.  There are times when I think I am going to lose my mind if I have to make another meal that does not get eaten, empty and reload the dishwasher for the third time that day, or remind my boys that, contrary to what they may think, someone always gets hurt when they wrestle.  But, being away from it and seeing people with even greater challenges than mine, has reminded me just how good I've got it and has made me embrace the mediocrity of my life with greater determination and a deeper sense of purpose.  Movies and books will not be written about my life, but I can't help but think that no matter how small, or how mundane, the tasks I choose to focus on each day are, if I perform them with sincerity and love then they will mean something to someone.

Making cards for friends:

Giving this monkey my full and undivided attention:

His Mr. Olympia pose:

Cleaning up disasters:

Teaching (grammar of all things!)

Making two suppers to appease my fussy crew:

Decorating for Christmas with my very own elves:

And trying to drag this lazy lump out of bed each and every morning:

This is my life.  Sure, it makes some people cringe, but I love it, and I am so grateful to be back it!

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Santa Baby

Christmas is coming, and the Websters are thrilled!  Well, most of us are thrilled.  Elliot is stressed, but really this should come as no surprise to anyone since Christmas has never been his thing and there always seems to be something perplexing that great, big brain of his.  This week's conundrum is the Santa letter . . . oh!  To bring yourself up to speed on life here at Shenanigans Inc., you should read this post about how a certain someone's world came crashing down around him when he was let in on the whole Santa Secret.  Looking back, it was pretty funny . . . traumatizing, but funny!

Anyhoo . . . the other day, the Wee Websters got into a merry mood and decided to write their Santa letters.  Zoe, being the level-headed and slightly greedy member of our clan (we love ya, Baby Girl), composed a five page report complete with pictures for good ol' Santy Claus.

Page 1

Page 2

Page 3

Page 4

Page 5

If anyone would like to help out on our Zoe's Christmas Campaign, you can drop off your donated gifts, preferably wrapped, here at Shenanigans Inc. headquarters . . .  tee hee!

That girl!  I think she is pushing our three-gift-limit to the max, but she assures me that these are just a few ideas and that I am welcome to share the list with other family members.  Well, thank you, for clearing that up, Baby Girl! 

Avery, our creative, in-house comedian, made his Santa letter into a cookie, and filled it with obnoxious jokes to get Santa going.  It reads:

Dear Santa, I hope you are not on a diet because my cookies are filled with fat.  (Remember, Avery is our exercise-conscious child.)  How old are you?  I think you are a 1000 years old.  I always wanted to know how heavy you are too? Well, back to the presents . . . 

tee hee!

He is so cute, and very law-abiding because, as you will notice, there are only 3 (not 36!) items on his list.

And last, but not least, Elliot's letter.  Oh, right.  He did not write one.  Why, you ask?  Well, Elliot is in the midst of some deep existential angst over the whole who is buying the Santa gifts.  You see, his mama, who he just recently learnt is one of Santa's many elves, is forever telling him she has no money to buy toys and treats.  She is also the very same woman who announced to the kids, while they were writing their letters, that mom and dad would not be buying any large gifts for Christmas this year because the pool was a very big expenditure.  Well, as soon as he heard this, he started huffing and puffing.  His arms were flapping and he could not utter a coherent word even if he knew what we was trying to say. 

What is wrong, Elliot?

Ah . . . . ahh . . . ahhh . . .  grrrr . . .

and off he stormed into his room.

Being far too familiar with Elliot's flair for everything dramatic, I gave him sometime before I went in to see how he was doing.

Bud, can you come out of your blanket cocoon and tell me what is wrong?

His head popped up, but he still could not speak.  Instead, he started tapping his fingers on the palm of his hand like he was texting someone.

Is it an animal? . . . I am so bad.  Are you worried you may not get your Ipod Touch?  Is that what this is all about?

You just said that you are not buying us big gifts, and I really want an Ipod!

No, I am  not buying you any big gifts, but you can ask Santa for it.

Do you see where this is going?  For most kids, once the whole Santa-gig is up, they continue to play along with almost an increased enthusiasm (five page reports vs. cookies), but for Elliot it makes no sense and is very frustrating.  At this point, I swear smoke was seeping from his ears, and his eyes were just about ready to pop out of their sockets.

BUT . . .  YOU . . . SANTA . . . REMEMBER!!!

I have no idea what you are talking.


Okay, yes, Elliot, you know the truth, but we can still play along.

But, how am I going to get my present?

The same way you do every year; you write  a letter to Santa.

You make no sense, Mom!

True, but nothing in this house makes sense.

You realise you are going to go broke!

Well, it hasn't happened yet, and this is our fifteenth Christmas as a family.

Can you leave?  I really need to process this. .

And, as of today, he is still processing and there is no Santa letter in sight. This should be a really interesting Christmas. . . tee hee! 

Monday, 26 November 2012

A New Christmas Tradition

With Zoe discharged from the hospital and feeling a bit better, I am ready to focus on Christmas.  Singing a Christmas carol yesterday at church really sealed the deal for me, and I spent the remainder of the service daydreaming about this most wonderful time of year!  Last year, my family and I started a brand new Christmas tradition, and, in all honesty, it has become my absolute favourite.  It is an Advent, scripture chain, where each evening we, as a family, gather together and read a Christmas-related scripture to count down the days to Christmas.  It is so simple, but oh, so very sweet!  Just before bed, I would pull out some Christmas cookies, we would light my grandmother's candelabra, turn off the lights, and snuggle on the couch, while Mr. Level-Headed read the evening's scripture passage.  This simple routine brought more Christmas spirit into our home and into our hearts than any amount of presents, songs, or candy could ever do.  It was amazing!  In fact, it saved Christmas for me last year.  It was last December when I suffered my first miscarriage, which left me feeling discouraged and overwhelmed during one of the busiest and most important times of the year.  I really did not know how I was going to pull it together for my young family, but I did, and the scripture chain helped me.  No matter how hard or busy the day was, I had a quiet, peaceful evening to look forward to with my family, and the time spent with those I love the most discussing our Savior, Jesus Christ, healed my wounded heart and uplifted my weary soul.  It helped us to focus on what truly mattered in life and what the season is truly all about.  Christmas is about family.  It is about peace, hope, and joy, and that is exactly what our Advent scripture chain welcomed into our home.

So, because I know you are now dying to make your very own Advent scripture chain, I thought I would post some pictures of how I made ours last night.  Now, before you go and think: "Ooooh!  That Krista is so creative!", I have to confess that I pilfered this idea from someone else's blog last year, but sadly, I no longer remember where it can from.  Eeek!

1.  The first thing you need to do is to find the scripture passages you want to read.  Google makes this so easy!  Just type in Advent scripture chain along with your particular faith, and voila, there are a ton of links, where people have already done the work for you.  Brilliant!  Here is the link to the scripture chain we are using this year.  It is an LDS one because it uses the Old Testament, the New Testament, and the Book of Mormon, but if this is not your thing, you can find one that better suits you.  But, I would highly suggest you use this one . . . tee hee!

2.  Then you cut some Christmas-coloured construction paper into strips.  This step was made so much easier with my my brand new paper trimmer.  Hallelujah!  My days of crooked edges are no more.  Who owns a paper trimmer, you ask?  Well, the same girl who also owns a laminator  . . . tee hee!  I am such a geek!

3.  If you are artistically-challenged like myself, you will want to print a large star template off the computer, cut it out, and use it to make your own star.  You could just colour the star you printed off in yellow, but I like my star to be made out of card stock.  Why?  Ummmm . . . actually, there is no real good reason.  That's just the way I do it.  

4.  Then decorate your star whichever way you want.  This year, I chose one of my favourite scripture passages (John 3:16: For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son) and glitter, lots of glitter!

5.  Now, here comes the fun part:  making the paper chain.  Alternating colours, print the day on one side of the strip and write the scripture passages on the other side.  Then loop your strip through the previous one and tape it together.  Easy cheesy!

6.   Attach the paper chain to the star with a ribbon, and hang it up in a prominent spot in your home so that you will never forget to do it.  (Really, though, your kids will not let you forget about it because it quickly becomes a treasured routine.)

My entry way
7.  This is the most important step!  Stock your home with yummy Christmas treats to nibble on during your scripture study.  I plan on making some cookies this Saturday morning (the first day of December) and freezing them.   Also, I have decided to get everyone their very own Christmas mug and fill it with hot chocolate or hot apple cider each evening.  This tradition just gets better and better!

8.  Beginning December 1, gather your family together each evening by candlelight, feast upon the words of the Lord, and let the true meaning of Christmas enter into your heart, your mind, and your soul.

I promise this will be your greatest Christmas ever!

Thursday, 22 November 2012

A Hero Exposed

I came home today from the hospital tired and discouraged.  What was supposed to be a four day stay in the hospital has turned into a minimum of thirteen days, with a new treatment scheduled to begin tomorrow.  We ate lunch, and Zoe, who, thankfully, is able to come home after her treatments, went down for a nap.  I looked at the boys.  I didn't have it in me to do school today.  I needed to get out, to feel the sun on my face, to hear the wind sweep past my ears, and to breathe the crisp, Fall air.

Who wants to go for a hike instead of school?

The boys squealed with delight.  Elliot grabbed his bike, and Avery grabbed Scout and the leash.  Thanks to hunting season, it has been far too long since we hiked along our favourite trail on the Peninsula, and it felt incredible to be back out there.  Elliot and Scout sped down the path, while Avery found a walking stick and enjoyed cracking the puddles of ice under our feet.  Here beneath the canopy of trees, I felt at peace.  There were no decisions to make, no doctors to consult with, and no feelings of helplessness.  For the first time in a long time, I felt whole again.  I felt like me, and I was enjoying every minute of it.

After we walked about forty-five minutes into the woods, Elliot called Avery and I over to a small grassy area beside a beaver pond.  It was beautiful, and Elliot was making plans for us to come back there next summer for a picnic, while Scout was happily swimming in the water.  I sat down on a rock alongside the shore and watched Elliot and Scout play.  It felt like summer again, but even better because we were not being swarmed by black flies.  After a few moments, Avery grew tired of our spot and begged us to accompany him to the beaver lodge just around the corner.  I got up and was walking up the path, when I heard Elliot scream in fright.  I quickly turned around and saw Elliot standing by the water's edge yelling to Scout, who had managed to slip off one of the logs into the water and who had become sandwiched between two of them.  He was struggling to keep his head above the water, and Elliot was struggling to maintain his cool!

pause . . .

At this point, I should tell you that we lost our first Duck Tolling Retriever, Sport, four years ago after he fell through the ice in the river and drowned.  Luckily we were not there to witness this tragedy, but it has haunted Elliot ever since.

resume . . .

Without even thinking, I ran over to the water, dropped to my knees, and grabbed one of the large logs.  I heaved it up with all my strength.  In spite of it's size, I was able to lift it about four inches, just enough to give Scout the space he needed to swim closer to me.  Unfortunately, Scout still did not have enough room to get himself up on the other log and out of the water.  At this point, I realized we were in trouble because I could not let go of the log without hurting Scout, but I needed a free hand to lift him out.  Just then, I heard Elliot run up behind me and shout:  "This is NOT going to happen again!".  He quickly walked out onto the log, and grabbed hold of Scout by his collar and pulled him out of the water.  As soon as they reached the shore, Scout, who was oblivious to the magnitude of this dire situation, shook the water off himself, and ran up the path on hot pursuit of his next adventure.  The boys and I looked at each other in disbelief.  Elliot began to cry.  

I can't lose him mom.

And you didn't babe.  You saved him.

We need to go home, NOW.

Okay . . .

It was a quiet walk back to the car.  When we returned home, Elliot went straight to his room and put the radio on.  I called Mr. Level-Headed and told him all about our "interesting" afternoon.

Well, one of two things can happen.  This is either going to really freak Elliot out or empower him. We will have to wait and see.

Later, when Elliot finally emerged from his room, he laughed:

Mom, Scout won't stop following me.  I think he thinks I'm his hero.

Well, bud, you are.  You were really brave today.  You didn't lose control, and you saved your puppy.  I am really proud of you.

Ha, ha!  I always knew I was a hero!

  Empowerment it is . . . phew!

Well, I didn't get the relaxing hike I had hoped for but, really, I can't complain.  Tonight, I will have all of my babies under the same roof, sleeping cozily in their own beds, the love of my life sleeping beside me, and my favourite pooch trying to wiggle his way in between us.

Life is good!

I took this photo and posted it on Instagram moments before all the excitement started.  I lifted the log Elliot is standing on.  That sucker is huge!  Pretty impressive . . . huh?  Tee hee!

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Plan B

I am taking the next few days off from the blog.  Zoe's symptoms have returned, and she needs to be taken to the hospital twice a day to receive her meds intravenously.  This is a much better plan than the original one, which involved us staying in the hospital for four days.  EEEEK!   Nonetheless, please keep our family in your prayers.  Thanks! 

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Chester and Spike

In just two months Baby Girl will be turning 15 . . . 15!  I don't know how that happened.  Time is a funny thing; it all depends upon how you look at it.  From one angle, fifteen years seems like a lifetime.  I can barely remember a time when this world did not have a Zoe Webster in it.  From another angle, it seems like these past fifteen years have flashed by, and I have to stop and give my head a shake; yes, Krista, you are the mom of an almost fifteen year old daughter.  When did that happen?

One of the cruelties of teenage-hood is that parents see their time quickly coming to an end, and they want to cling onto their teenager, relishing in the last few years, where they will all live cozily under one roof together, but the teenager is already moving on.  They have one foot in the door and one foot out.  They are ready to grab hold of the world and make their impression on it, but the parent is begging them to come back in, to curl up on the couch, and to snuggle with them just one last time.
The other distressing thing about teenage-hood, is they become so dang interesting and fun to be with, but they don't want to be with you!  Inevitably what follows is an episode of Spike and Chester from Bugs Bunny, where the parent is Spike and the teenager is Chester.  Initially in the relationship, the teenager, like Chester the terrier, bounces along behind the fearless and all-knowing Spike, the Bulldog, who in our scenario is the parent, asking:  "What are we going to do today, Spike?  Huh? Huh? Huh?".  Poor little Chester would do anything to spend just a moment with Spike, but Spike is too busy.  He's got too much on the go.  Then after a series of events, or in our case fourteen years, the roles reverse.  Chester is now the fearless one with a purpose, and Spike, is reduced to bouncing behind Chester, begging to be acknowledged by him.  I always enjoyed these cartoons, and it sums up exactly how I have been feeling lately.  I am flitting around Zoe, trying my darnedest to get noticed, and she hauls off a backhand shouting:
 "AHHHHHH . . .SH-UUUUT - UUUUP", and then I turn to the television audience, or my blogging audience, and swoon over the fact that I am Zoe's mom and ramble on about how awesome she is . . . tee hee!  Right?  It totally works.  (Okay, so she never hits me, but she does tell me to shut up, in the most kind and non-disrespectful way.)

Anyhoo . . . .

I nearly died a little while back, when Chester (Zoe) asked me, Spike, to teach her how to sew.

What?  You can see me?  You are asking if I can TEACH you something?

Rather than coming back with a snippy little comment like the ones above, I kept my mouth shut out of fear she would change her mind, and nonchalantly said: "Sure!"; meanwhile, I tried to contain the bouncy dog inside me, who was starting to wiggle and dance, and who may just pee on the floor because she is so gosh-darn excited! This can't be happening!

I really feared it may be some fleeting, teenage whim, but the other night, Zoe announced it was time for us to get started, and so, being the mom who is always anxiously awaiting for even the tiniest sliver of acknowledgement that her teenage daughter can manage to muster up, I dropped everything and ran to get my sewing kit.

EEEEEEEEEEEEK!  We are going to have so much fun!

Then I froze.  I saw the slightest flicker of her eye beginning to roll in disapproval, and I cringed.

Too much?  Should I tone it down?



Phew!  That was a close one.

We pulled out her pattern, her material, and my sewing kit and got to work.  We have spent three nights so far working on this project together, and they have been so dear to me.  If I was smart, I would stretch this project out a little longer just to make it last.  Working alongside Baby Girl, marvelling at how skilled she is and how grown up she has become, and laughing at all of our blunders together, has rejuvenated this weary mom's soul.  No matter how big she gets, or how independent she becomes, Chester will always need her Spike.  They just belong together.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The Things I Learn Cleaning Up

After a beautiful long weekend, like we just had, I am a little embarrassed to say that I have nothing exciting or adventuresome to post.  We had a laid back, movie-filled, family weekend, and I loved every minute of it!  Elliot healed from his tooth extraction and enjoyed his dentist-prescribed diet of cheesies and ice cream for the day (it was a painful procedure and both she and I felt he deserved it).

Mr. Level-Headed and I went on a date Friday night to see the new Bond movie, Starfall.  It was so awesome!  As a new promotion, the movie theatre is putting their popcorn in large Hobbit buckets, and this thrilled me to no end, but not as much as it did Avery.  When we arrived home, Avery confiscated my bucket and decided, along with his stuffy's sleeping bag, it would make the perfect hat.  Of course! Why didn't I think of that?

He wore that thing for two days.  What a monkey! (Oh, and you should take note of all the Justin Bieber posters that adorn his walls.  It is important for later.)

So, you see, nothing terribly exciting happened around here.  I figure it's the calm before the storm.  Mr. Level-Headed begins classes again on November 24, and I am sure life will start rock'n and roll'n immediately after.

Anyhoo . . . my grand idea for this post came to me yesterday as I was cleaning up the house after our lazy, pajama/pyjama, movie weekend.  I was shocked at just how much I learnt about all my munchkins from their post-weekend shambles.

First of all, if I had not cleaned up, I probably would have missed out on seeing Baby Girl's art project.  She has been dreadfully worried about this term's art class because, in her own words, "I am not an artist, mom!"  Well, I beg to differ, and I now have the proof.  Check this out:

Unless she was trying to draw a horse, I would say this is an excellent masterpiece.  Not an artist . . . come on!  Oh, and we named him Mr. Mudgins . . . tee hee!

Second of all, if I had not cleaned up, I would never have learnt just how prepared my home is in the event of a mock home-invasion.  As I was refilling my boys' toilet paper roll, I found two (fake) hand guns securely hidden in the cubbard beneath the sink.

I feel much safer now . . . tee hee!

Thirdly, if I had not decided to clean up the house yesterday, then the wee-est Webster would not have been inspired to clean up his bedroom, which lead to the removal of ALL his Justin Bieber posters.  Even the ones that were hanging on the ceiling above his bed.  You would not believe the peace this has brought to Mr. Level-Headed's worried soul . . . tee hee!

Wow!  Yes, Avery has decided he is too mature for the posters.  He's still a fan, just not a crazed fan anymore.

And finally, if I had not cleaned up and had not been lazy all weekend allowing grand ideas to flow freely through my mind, I would never have discovered that my bedroom is, in fact, large enough to house my very own thoughtful spot with a beautiful view of the river.

Isn't it lovely?  Lots of magical, grand ideas will be conjured up here, folks; I have no doubt about it . . . tee hee!

Happy first day back after the long weekend!

Friday, 9 November 2012

Brutally Honest

Last night as we left soccer, one of the other moms asked Elliot how homeschool was going.  I could feel my insides tighten up.  People with NLD are brutally honest, and do not understand there are times when a filter is required.  I leaned over to hear exactly what his take on our week was because, in all honesty, it sucked.

Not good actually.  I don't think I put a full day in this whole week.

Well, it happens.

Yeah, hopefully next week will be better.

I am sure it will be.

I was shocked.   Elliot did get it.  He recognized that he had a bad week, and he was probably painfully aware of  why it was so bad.  You see last Friday, one of Elliot's teeth became loose.  No big deal, right?  WRONG!  It was a huge deal to him, and he became fixated on trying to get it out.  Oh, and when I say fixated, I mean fixated with a capital F.  He could not function.  He could not do anything except work on that tooth.  I texted Mr. Level-Headed:  Elliot has a loose tooth, and he is so far gone, I can't reel him in.  School is not getting done with him today.  He texted back:  I think that's best.   I love that my husband gets it.  People with NLD have a hard time modulating emotions, blocking out distractions, and interpreting pain, which explains why my poor boy spent that evening and, many after it, writhing in pain on his bed and crying hysterically.  All because of a stupid, little tooth.  It just doesn't seem fair.

This is what homeschool looked like for Elliot this week:

And here is Avery slaving away, never even commenting on the fact that his brother did a lot less work than him:

What a great brother!

Anyhoo, as Elliot said,  this week wasn't great; he didn't put a full day of school in this entire week.  He was anxious, unfocused, and in all honesty, extremely annoying.  I hate saying that.  You may hate me for saying that.  But it is the truth, the brutal truth.  Even though I am fully aware of all his idiosyncrasies and all of his NLD traits, there are times when I just don't care.  There are times I just want my boy to pull it together and do what he is supposed to do.  There are times when I want him to be like everyone else because that would make my day so much easier, and there are times I, eventually, lose my temper, like I did yesterday.  I yelled.   I yelled some more.  I threatened to take away his screen time and his Halloween candy, knowing full well that it wasn't his fault and that he would do it if he could.  Ugh!  Another stellar mom moment. Then I felt miserable.  I have been praying all week for more patience and more understanding with Elliot, but it just doesn't seem to be coming fast enough.  I apologised to him, gave him a hug, and we carried on, with Avery and I doing work and him, well, him working on his tooth.

But hearing him talk to my friend last night put it all back into perspective for me.  It was a bad week.  They happen.  They happen to everyone, and hopefully, like Elliot said, next week will be better.  I need to relax.  He is doing his best, and I am doing my best.  Sure, there will be times when we fall, and there will be times when we let each other down, but we are in this together, and together, we are going to make this work.  

Looking back at some of our other photos this week, I can't help but be grateful that Elliot isn't like anyone else.  He is who is, and I love every ounce of him!

Who else makes slingshots out of their floss sticks when they are supposed to be doing their math?

tee hee!

Have a great weekend!