Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

This is a year for all of us to be so grateful for every little blessing! It has been a tough year for many and how wonderful that we are given a day to be with family, eat wonderful food and celebrate our daily gifts of God given goodness.

As a tribute to Noah's teachers, therapists, and family members, we spent the last week making turkey's of thanks.
I cut out the pieces and wrote on the turkeys and Noah helped me to glue on the accessories. It was fun and he was semi-patient... completing a few turkeys each day.

I think my favorite part of any holiday is the preparation; especially setting up the atmosphere. I love pulling out my Grandmother's dishes and finding linens and accents to go with the holiday decor.
I also love dressing my little man for the day! My mini clothes horse!
We had a wonderful celebration with our immediate family. It was fun, relaxing and satisfying... yum!! :-)
Here is a photo collage of our day photographed by my talented hubby.

I'm thankful for God guiding our path, for my family, our health and our wonderful friends, old and new! I look forward to growing closer to all this upcoming year!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

You Better Run, Run, Run!

So lately, well for the past four years ;-), I feel like all we do is run from one thing to the next.

In order to have some sanity and connection with my husband, along with a simi-functional 40-something body, we like to run together in the morning. So, we wake up, (usually around 7:00) Noah has some milk while he plays on Paddington (his i-pad) and we have some coffee, then it's off for a morning run with Noah in his jogging stroller.

We get home with about 15/20 minutes for Noah to have breakfast, get dressed and get in the car to go to school.

School is from 9-12, then he usually has an appointment soon after.

There is the NACD program that is supposed to be completed daily, along with a nap and feedings, relaxing and just being in the moment. All this is supposed to be fit in before going to bed around 8:00 and starting it all over again!

Noah's weekly schedule...

Mon: School 9 - 12 - Speech at 1:00
Tues: School 9 - 12 - Speech at 2:00
Wed: School 9 - 12 -Speech at 1:00
Thurs: School 9 - 12 -Speech at 2:00 - Horseback Riding at 3:00
Fri:School 9 - 12 - Music at 1:00

A blogger friend talked in a previous post about Free Play and the importance of it for proper development.
She also spoke about the guilty feelings that we (especially the mom's of children with special needs) experience when we aren't DOING something to better the future of our little ones!

Ahhh, how I related to her post! I constantly feel like I should be Doing More, Being Better at ... and Helping Noah to Accomplish... It is never ending!

Noah is happy. He is doing well in school. He is making strides in speech. He is growing up and he is AMAZING!

I need to learn to live more in the present moment and take in everything around me, just like my little man!
When I grow up, I hope to be JUST LIKE HIM!!!

Friday, November 5, 2010

To Ride or Not To Ride... That is the Question!

Oh, to have my little man riding a bike... isn't that the quintessential "boy in the summer" thing to do?

When I was pregnant and we found out we were having a boy, my mind went on quite the adventure! Having only raised a girl before (where badminton was the sport of choice) and not living with a sports oriented husband (art, movies and research on the latest cameras vs the latest quarterback of the season was his focus) I had no idea what to expect from a boy being brought into our household.

Now, I do have a brother in law and nephew that would surface in the dictionary under the standard definition of testosterone. They watch the weekend sports, whatever that may be at the moment; they work on cars in the garage, a lifelong adventure; and they talk about "man-food" like it's the second coming... so yes, I have had some exposure to the Man Cave, Guys World kind of atmosphere. However, how is that incorporated into our world... one of eccentric, crazy, fun-filled adventures, with a non-gender passionate lifestyle amongst us all.

Noah is the epitome of all of us combined... funny, creative, seeks his solitude, interested in movies, books, numbers, order and reading. The physical aspect of his lifestyle has come along as a secondary reflux. His peers are into soccer, soccer, and more soccer. Noah is into running, the feel of the wind on his face, the shadow that follows him and the smiles from those lucky enough to come across his path. The kicking of the ball to watch it fly through the air, fascinating! However, having to kick that ball to reach a specific person or make a goal... boring!

I recognize Noah's drives and desires, yet I still have this unrelenting compulsion to have Noah ride a bike. And not just ride the bike, but ENJOY it! How deranged is that!?! For some reason, I believe, that once he masters the peddling and maneuvering of the bicycle, he will want nothing more than to explore the world from this rubber wheeled contraption!

We began our bike adventure with the infamous push-trike.

This bike worked well for quite a while. We attached Velcro strips around the peddles to keep Noah's feet in place while riding. The wheels turned on rotation as the bike was being pushed, therefore moving Noah's legs in the proper pattern of riding his bike both for memory and brain development. Also, the push handle allowed the parent to steer the trike as well. This bike met every need possible, and Noah LOVED going out on his bike. The problem arose when he outgrew the little trike. (Growth pattern has never been a challenge for Noah).

So, on to bike number 2...

This past summer I purchased a two wheel bike with training wheels from Target. We put it together, then we took it to the local bike shop for some "modifications". Well, the modifications ended up costing us more than the bike itself! What we did was we changed out the peddles of the bike and added peddles that could accommodate the toe stoppers. This way, we figured it was a good transition for Noah to learn to peddle the bike by himself, and keep his feet on the peddle. The toe stoppers were there for additional support.

Well, needless to say, this was not a big winner! He would put his helmet on, get on the bike, and (with my assistance, poor lower back) would peddle about three or four spins, then he was "all done". All done - seriously... we only went half way to the neighbors! Ugh! But, I want him to love it, so... we turn the bike around, and I "negotiate" with my 4 yr. old son, to try to ride his bike back to our house - all 20 feet! (It's amazing that I negotiate for a living... yet my four year old son can really throw me under the bus)!!!

So, failure with bike #2 has led me on the search for a larger trike that had the capability of assistance (push bar) yet allowed Noah the independence to learn to peddle and ride a bike on his own.

After a lot of research, I ordered the Radio Flyer, 10" trike with a push bar. It arrived today.

The nice thing about this bike is that it is larger than his last trike. The peddles move in rotation when the bike is moving. There is a push handle, however it does not "steer" the bike. It fits Noah well, and I figured that once he has mastered this trike, his little bike will be a piece of cake!

I was all excited when this arrived today! I put it together and then woke Noah up from his nap... "Come on bug (love bug) wake up and lets go ride your new bike"! Ha! He was so not interested! Once I finally got him on the bike, with his shoes tied to the peddles (need to get more Velcro straps) he rode about three rotations and then said and signed... "All Done"!

So, my question for the weekend... Do I wait a while and try again or do I prove to him how much fun the peddling of a bike with the wind blowing in your hair truly is to all! The fact that there is nothing more satisfying than flying down the street, riding on rubber wheels and smiling so wide you can only hope to catch the bugs flying through the evening!

Hmmm, is this my passion or my little man's? Only time will tell :-)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Happy Halloween!

This was such a fun weekend! This is our first year in our new neighborhood; a true neighborhood where they have block parties, trick or treaters and lots of fun!

One of Noah's favorite shows, along with Signing Times and Jacks Big Music Show, is The Wiggles! So, this year he dressed up as Captain Feather Sword from the Wiggles! (we made him an awesome feather sword to go with his outfit, but sadly it was left behind - not viewed to be very awesome from the little man).

On Saturday there was a neighborhood block party. It was so much fun! Noah had a great time, (after his initial terrifying fear of all the people gathered around) he had a fantastic time playing with the neighbor kids for over two hours!

Here are some wonderful shots of our little Captain...

Captain Noah is ready to party...

Ahoy Matey!!!

I've spotted the party!

Hmmm, a lot of gatherers... best to stand back and observe :-)

And in southern AZ, Devin Brooke was disguised as a beautiful Monarch!

A wonderful weekend was had by all!