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Cowabunga

“Mom, MOM! You didn’t button up my pjs all the way!” Asher complains. 

“Well I would have, but you insisted in a cowabanga jump in the middle of me helping you with your buttons…”

Insert here Finn laughing hysterically. The room is dark and I just finished his swicheroo. We all start laughing. Asher can’t stop.

I say the word again, “Cowabungah..” we all giggle again. 

The best way to put to rest a full day, with laughter.

Happy birthday week, Asher!!

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“Will you get mad if…”

Words poured out of Asher’s mouth so easily when he checked in with his brother while they both drew a rainbow…

It’s these tiny moments in which I’m not using conflict resolution skills that bring fresh air into our home.

“I really like this Asher, it’s beautiful…” said Finn.

The house which was once a storm of little boy tantrums is now calm. Sip. Coffee. Reflection. Breathe. Peace.

“I’ll show you how to draw rain… But you can make it however you want Finn…”

What was once a argument is now a dance.

What changed? The sea was just swirling with “Stop it!!”, walls, and “if… then…” . It was a model of calm seas and changing of the storm windows to spring and summer screens.

While they screamed I kneeled down rubbed backs and said “Instead of stop we can ask how can I help?” and waited…. then I walked over to our house rules chalkboard and added two more:

quiet voices
ask “how can I help?”

This house without walls is our home.

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Heart Medallion

Asher made me a beautiful heart medallion. After it adorned my neck for a day, it now hangs in my car to protect my heart and all that I love.

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Some people through transition do some funny things. Awkward things. Surprising things. And what I am about to tell you might be one… but this week I bought a longboard skateboard (and if we lived by the Ocean it just might have been a surf board).  The boys now have kick scooters, safer than skateboards, lighter than a bike and easier for me to carry when those little feet tire.

“Why did you buy a longboard?” a friend asked.

“Good luck with that,” said a stranger.

“I wish my Mom did that with me,” said a teenager.

“Good for you,” said a family member.

“Will you PLEASE wear elbow and knee pads and a helmet,” said my parents.

So why did I do it? Because we went long boarding last weekend and I fell in love with the experience. The boys were biking and I was riding and I could easily stop and  hang out and cruise with Finn who isn’t a fast biker AND I could still carry his bike and the board when biking protests began. SO it’s practical you see.

Practical.

“No it’s not midlife ma’ dear, you’re only 37… it’s just you.”

If you live around town you are sure to see the boys and me cruising down the bike path.  Well not just yet. It’s still being built.

 

 

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Why we have tongues

“Asher, you know why we have tongues?” said Finn. Then he proceeded to answer his own question. “So we can say the alphabet L M N O P.”

“I know why we have tongues,” I chimed in from the kitchen while making our ditalini-inspired dinner, “so we can say the word LOVE.”

“And we have tongues so we can taste,” said Asher.

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As the boys played with their cars in the playroom I started dinner. Marinated steak on a stick, yum, Broccoli, with cheese of course. Carrot sticks. Grapes. I am trying to create the rainbow. After watching the flick “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” I am determined that we’ll eat a rainbow of food throughout the day, make lots of smoothies, and drink lots of green veggie juice.  So dinner wasn’t by any means special, but it was colorful and full of protein.

“I put cheese on your broccoli,too.”
“Yummm.”
Asher jumps up and serves all of us juice. Finn and he get straws in their tall glasses. Sweet. Same color too. Very fair.
“So what is this?”
“Meat.”
“I think it’s pig.”
“I think it’s chicken.”
“Boys, actually it’s cow.”
“OOH, cow. Okay. We’re eating cow, Finn.”
“Yeah. We’re eating cow.”

Chew chew chew chew. Talk talk talk. Belly laughing because Finn can’t swallow it. Chew chew chew chew. We all eat a lot more broccoli, all the carrots and the leftover cow on our plates wasn’t saved for the morning.

Tomorrow I think I’ll make something with ditalini pasta. I love saying the word ditalini. I’m sure there’s a savory spring resume with a cup of ditalini thrown in. Ditalini. NO MOOO re COW this week.

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Reading

Can Asher read? I was asked recently. He’s not reading like a second grader, but for Asher he is reading at his own pace. If you ask him, he will bow his head down low and say “I can’t read.” He sounds as if he is failing. There are kids that ARE reading books and books. And Asher’s self esteem is low. But we are a smiling, encouraging, a happy little family that just meets people where they are at in the moment and encourage with love and support. He is reading as in recognizing sounds and letters, can write his letters but we are working on helping develop the executive functions of his brain and pulling it all together. What’s that? It’s the front part of your brain that calls all the final shots. The boss. 

We look at what Asher does know and is excited about and create lots and lots of games to exercise that part of his mind. Memory games. Card games. Singing and creating songs with lyrics that rhyme in the car. Creating word challenges and guessing games with each other. Memorizing phone numbers to call. Games on the computer that require fast recall. And I am researching more…. exercise exercise exercise. And lots and lots of rest, playing and running to let all the wiggles out.

What are we doing about reading?
Reading children’s books with LARGE print. Board books. Books with repeat sounds, slowing down for consonant blends etc. We pick out beginning reader books and books with large print. I have completely hid the tv in our house and WE LOVE IT that way. I do miss our Wild Kratts show though. But there’s always the internet.

He enjoys much more…

Creative art projects.

Good weather neighborhood games.

Family games at night. 

Phonetic games on the computer.

Being read to.

Writing letters to people we love and miss.

Taking time to just sit with words. 

Time for one on one attention. 

 

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