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mirthful maddie

Monday, March 22, 2010

In the last few weeks its been as if my little Madster has gone through a transformation of sorts.
I've told you how incredibly laid back Maddie is. She takes everything in stride, rarely getting upset...and she always has a smile on her face.
And it's still true...in fact it seems to have multiplied.
I think Maddie is finding her sense of humor...and it is HILARIOUS! :)
Case in point - on Saturday, Shad took the kids to Kansas city to an alpaca show - because, you know, we now own two (count them, two) alpaca (not quite sure if that should be alpaca or alpacas...but since I'm not on the clock, I'm not going to do the research to figure it out. :)
Anyway...He took them to the show.
When they got back, I had this conversation with Maddie...

Me: Maddie, did you like the show?
Maddie: Uh-huuuuuuuh.
Me: Well, what did you see there?
Maddie: Sheep. (Believe me, she knows the difference.)
Me: Maddie, you didn't see sheep, did you? It was an alpaca show.
Maddie: Uh-huuuuuuh. We saw sheep. Pink sheep (with a big grin on her face.) Lots of pink sheep.
Me: Really? Wow. Pink sheep. I don't think I've ever heard of a pink sheep at an alpaca show. ;)
Maddie: (Giggle, giggle, snort.) Ha. Ha. Mommy. I gaaaaawt you! :)
Me: Yes, Maddie. You certainly did.

I can't quite remember what developmental milestone that is for un-institutionalized kids - how early they truly discover their funny bone...but Maddie seems to have certainly found hers! :)


I really haven't fallen off the face of the planet...it just seems like it.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Hey look! She's blogging!"
"Oooohh! I never thought I'd see the day!"
"Wow! I'd given her blog up for dead."
Don't get TOO sassy or you can just forget about seeing the pics I was thinking of posting later this week! :)
Yep. I had a few minutes with my laptop - a rare commodity around here - and before I knew it I was clicking on the 'Blogger' tab and typing a quick update.
It sure does feel good to be back. I hadn't intended to have such a long blogging break. I fully intended to keep updating as much as possible, its just that evening after evening started slipping by without so much as an idea of what to post. And when I did come up with something, I'd fall asleep at the keyboard or drift off on the couch before I found the words to write.
Tonight? Well, tonight I have found I have a few words left over from my week at work. I don't have another story due until Tuesday (when I have two due)...and the short reprieve has allowed me to catch my breath...and has proven to me that I really haven't lost my love of writing and blogging - my job is just continues to slurp every last word out of my brain.
Lovely word picture, no?
Anyway...I owe you an update. Let's see how much I get done before falling asleep tonight. :)

The Madster
A little over two years since bringing this child home and I am still constantly amazed at her tenacity and eternal optimism. She rarely gets upset - which makes dealing with her hearing loss so much easier. I know its not all about me, really I do, but I have known since I was young, I don't have what it takes to raise a special needs child. I have zero patience. I know that comes as a comlete shock to every last one of you. ;)
The fact that she is soooooo easy-going makes it easier on everyone. She doesn't cry and throw fits. She. just. doesn't. - unlike three of my three other children who will remain nameless. ;) She gets disappointed more than mad. In fact, the only time I've seen her upset about anything it has been with Nick - and can I just say...she takes care of herself. ;>) Most of the time, if she's disappointed, she will just give you one of those looks with a quivering lower lip, but if you explain it to her and give her a quick hug, she's usually pretty good to go.
I'm not saying she's un-emotional, or even keeping her emotions in check...she constantly laughs with these huge belly laughs. The kind that are contagious. She just accepts things the way they come and decides to make the most out of it.
Its that easy-going attitude that I think has helped her come as far as she has come in the last two years. Maddie is just finishing up her first year of kindergarten...which, I need to say, was an absolutely brilliant move on our part. I'll fill you in more in her update post (which, rest assured, I have already started writing) but we now believe she has a solid foundation to have a great second-year kindergarten experience next year.
She knows all of her numbers, letters and sounds. She is writing very well now - much better than at the first of the year. She can sit still...well, still for her...during storytime and is no longer a class disruption. She's reading...she's slow, but she's doing it and she's a leader. Everyone seems to like her and responds well to her. :) There's SO much to tell you about Maddie - her language is exploding, she loves to sing, she's telling more about her day and explaining all kinds of things to us in words that make sense and we can understand, and she's not afraid of animals anymore!
Oh! And my little girl isn't a little girl anymore. She's six now. SIX!
I really need to get her post finished.

Spring means sports season
Anya just wrapped up her first basketball season and is now addicted. She's constantly outside playing ball with the guys...which is SO fun to watch! :) She also went to her first volleyball camp, which she loved. I think I have a little tom-girl on my hands. I'd say tom-boy, but Anya is still ALL girl! :)
Alek is getting ready to start his baseball season. He had tryouts today and did pretty welll, esepcially since he hasn't spent five minutes practicing since last fall. He is, however, pulling the same stuff he does everytime I sign him up for a sport. He's already saying 'I don't like it,' 'I don't want to do it,' 'I hate baseball.'
Now before you go getting all 'Well, don't make the boy do it then,' on me, let me just say he. does. this. every. time. EVERY. TIME. And then as soon as he finishes his first practice he's fine. Alek is incredibly shy...almost paralyzingly so. If we didn't sign him up for things, he would be perfectly content to stay at home...uninvolved in anything. But he loves playing sports, and once he gets on the team and starts making friends, (there is no team here in the Emerald City) he has a GREAT time. So we endure the complaining for a few weeks and wait to watch his first game sometime in April.
And we push, just a bit, to try to get him comfortable in getting OUT of his comfort zone. A fine line to walk...but we're getting better at it. ;)
Nick and Anya are also signed up for summer ball. Thankfully they don't start until May, so we have awhile yet before the craziness begins.
Speaking of craziness...
I've signed Maddie up to play softball this year - with the big kids. Shad thinks I'm nuts. Maybe...but Maddie loved her t-ball experience last year and since the kindergartners don't get to play much - they just bring them in after the first three outs, but everyone gets to bat, I think she'll be fine. Besides, she loves it it. Of course that means I'll have four kids on four different teams, playing all. summer. long. I think we'll be living out of Blue Mama by June. ;)

This and that
THE meeting went well.
What meeting you ask? Oh, the one I forgot to update you about. Maddie's little IEP meeting. You remember, the ONE where Mr. Mean, mean man was trying to reduce Maddie's services from two days to just one?
We brought the teacher, a few of her service providers, Shad and I and Mr. Mean, mean man into one room and after about 30 minutes of telling him a million and one reasons why it wouldn't work, he finally backed down.
Thank. Goodness.
Of course that doesn't mean we're safe. The district, like every other district in the country, has some SERIOUS budget issues and it looks like services will be cut SEVERELY next year. I'm not sure if they can legally get rid of everything, but...well, for now we're fine.

Hmmm....what else?
Oh yeah! I'm failing miserably at all of my New Year's resolution, except for number three! :) I'm doing great! The girls and I have quickly made it through two, count them, TWO Little House on the Prairie books so far this year and have brought the boys into the third book - Little Farmer Boy. Nick loves it...Alek doesn't. I think I've lost him. Sigh.
But Maddie is LOVING reading time. She asks every night if we get to read tonight. So I considering that a HUGE success. Kind of outweighs those four other little ones, doesn't it?
Well, at least that's what I keep telling myself.

Up and coming

Let's see..what's coming up this week?
Shad got us some tickets to a Bon Jovi concert this week. I'm psyched about that. In the 20+ years we've been married and the five years we dated before that we've never gone to a concert together.
Kind of pathetic, really.
Almost as pathetic as the visions I'm having of this shin-dig. I imagine I'm going to be packed shoulder-to-shoulder with bunch of 40-somethings brandishing 20 year old t-shirts, teased hair, blue eye shadow and acid wash jeans, half drunk out of their minds, reliving the glory days of high school.
Hmm....you know what's even more pathetic?! I don't have anything to wear! What does an almost 40-year-old wear to a concert of a former hair-band that she loved when she was in high school?
It certainly WON'T be a 20-year old t-shirt. I couldn't even fit into it even if Shad and I HAD gone to a concert two decades ago and picked one up!
Think I'll be out of place wearing my mom-jeans, white tennis and a sweater top!
AUGH! Decisions, decisions. :)


my little project

Monday, March 1, 2010

I got some REALLY good news from a friend this last week. The book she's been working on, is getting picked up by Beacon Hill. Yes...THE Beacon Hill!
And guess what?!!!!!
She wants to use some of Maddie's story in her book!!!!!!! :) Just a little bit...the book is actually about remaining childless after battling with infertility, but she wants a taste of other perspectives as well.
Sooooooo....I get to write something that will actually be PUBLISHED in a REAL book!!!!!
Wooohooo! :)

P.S. I'll be sure to post a link once the thing is actually done and available for purchase...you know....just in case you feel so inclined. ;)


joy of adoption

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