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Well, How Did I Get Here?

We received the results of my daughter’s Day o’Testing, and the results came back as everyone pretty much not knowing  the cause of my daughter’s multiple speech and behavioral issues.

Which is SO not helpful.

I should start by stating that my daughter was not diagnosed as being on the autistic spectrum.  But let us just say that she needed a home run, and only scored a triple.  She needed one more box to be checked to have a confident diagnosis, and the team of doctors didn’t feel they could do that.  So, that leaves us with a little person who has some issues, they just don’t fall into neat categories.  They felt that the ABA therapy that autistic children often receive would not address her particular needs.

Apparently they felt that she has some sensory processing problems (sensation-seeking) that are leading to some of the behavioral things, so she will be getting some occupational therapy for those.

She will continue to receive the maximum speech therapy allowed under our insurance plan, and also that is the maximum recommended for her age group.  She fell into the 7th percentile for expressive speech, which I don’t have to tell you is not all that hot.

I think as a parent, I wanted everything to fall perfectly into those boxes, so that I could point to something definitively and say, “Aha! That is the cause!” and then do everything I can to learn about that something and advocate for her regarding that something.

But that something isn’t anything at the moment, although she will be re-evaluated in six months because as I said, there are things that are not quite right, they just don’t fit into the autistic spectrum at this time.   So I’m left sort of wondering why her speech is so delayed and why she has some of the problems that she does without any medically recognized condition behind them.

Which for me, personally, is difficult.

Any advice?

 

Tuesday Teeny Poll

What’s that, you say?  I wasn’t here Friday or yesterday?

Well, you can blame my computer for that.  Even though it isn’t that old, there was something wrong with the cooling system and we had to get it fixed.

Boo.

Anyhow, 55% of you say that the best meal you ever ate was in a restaurant, and I would have to agree.  I was lucky enough to be able to enjoy a dinner at the famed Club 33 at Disneyland (thanks, Marc!) for our 3rd wedding anniversary.   Not many people get to go up a French lift to get to their meal. And man, it was good.  My flat iron steak was tasty, but the memory I have of the cheese course still makes my mouth water.

And now, with summer breathing down our necks, I want to know what you think about cruises.  A friend of mine recently took her first cruise with her husband and son, and has already signed up for their next one.

What You Need: An Advance Directive. And a Will, if You Haven’t Already Done That

Before my surgery, I was given a folder with various directions on how to prep for the upcoming knife to the throat.  I say that literally.

Among the papers in the folder was an Advance Directive.  For those of you unfamiliar with the term, it is basically instructions to the hospital on your wishes if you were to become incapacitated or gravely ill.

Trust me, it wasn’t a fun exercise.  I went over all the questions with my husband, asking him his preference on some of the items, such as if he would want to be the sole person who determined if I was go go off life support.  This was no walk in the park stuff, but something necessary and something I realized I should have filled out a very long time ago.

Of course the surgery and the thought of going under general anesthetic was enough to scare me into doing one, but who knows what will happen to us from day to day?

An advance directive should not be just the provenance of the elderly. One minute we can be perfectly fine and the next day we could be in a coma because someone hit us with their car.  It doesn’t always have to be a foreseeable event.

OK, enough of me being a downer.

Just go and do it.  Going somewhere like here can help, as each state has different rules regarding advanced directives.

Your family will thank you.

And if you don’t believe me, just go and see The Descendants.

 

Monday Teeny Poll

79% of you are right handed, thus leaving the remaining voters as lefties.  Except, of course, for that troublemaker Sarah G. who had to go and muck up my EXTREMELY SCIENTIFIC poll.  Thanks for nothing, Sarah!

Ahem.

Today I’ve been thinking about the Occupy Wallstreet protests.

Things I Love: The No Cry Sleep Solution*

There are few things more draining than parenting a baby who is having difficulty sleeping.

You become so sleep-deprived that even simple solutions are beyond your grasp.  And that is where this book comes in.

As a parent who follows in spirit the ideas of Dr. Sears, The No Cry Sleep Solution dovetails nicely with the thought that the whole experience of “crying it out” is not advantageous to baby or parents.  I’m not saying that it isn’t a successful method for some people, but I recoil at the thought of leaving my infant alone in their crib, crying their eyes out.  I did a one night (desperation) experiment with both of my children using the cry it out method, and suffice it to say, none of us had the stomach for it. 

Author Elizabeth Pantley doles out specific, easy to follow suggestions on how to ease your child into the whole sleeping thing.  You can use whatever ideas work for you, and leave the ones that don’t.  She doesn’t promise that within two days your problems will be solved.  But she does encourage you to stick it out, and over the long run, things will improve.

I liked this book so much that I bought it twice.  We moved and I had no clue as to where the copy I used with the Munchkin was, nor did I have the time and energy to search through the boxes in the garage.  So I took a quick trip to Barnes and Noble, and it was just as helpful with my second child as with my first.  And both of them are completely different temperamentally.

So, it’s a great gift for a parent-to-be, or a parent who is looking for help in sleep department.

*This is not a paid review, nor did I receive any type of compensation.  I would buy this book three times if I had to.

Crafty Manolo

Manolo says, allow the Manolo to introduce you to the latest addition to the Manolosphere: Crafty Manolo!

The long time readers of the all thing Manolo, will immediately recognize the editor of this new venture. It is our own beloved friend, the Twistie, who, it turns out, is the unexpected expert in all things crafty and do it yourself.

So, please, go now and visit the Crafty Manolo.

The Lost Art of Telling Time

Dali Clock

Not to brag or anything, but my kid, he was one of the first in line when they were handing out the brains.

Wait, that is bragging, isn’t it?

Well, tough.  I call it like it is.

He has sailed through math this year, except for one chapter.

The chapter where he had to look at a clock face and figure out what time it was.

We had visited this concept last year, and I thought he had retained it. But, there was some frustration along with wrong answers at homework time. You see, my home has absolutely zero old-timey clock faces. And yes, I am going to label them old-timey. I don’t care if that makes you feel old.  If it does make you feel old, you probably are.  Again, telling it like it is.  Ahem, back to the story…

 If we had inherited a certain grandfather clock, then we would have one, but we didn’t and so each and every clock in the house is digital. The one on the microwave, the one on the stove, the DVR, all the bedroom clocks. And yes, I do have some watches, but wouldn’t you know, all of them needed new batteries and were thus useless in demonstrating how the big hand follows the little hand around in a circle. I found myself biting back a flippant, “You know, the hands go in a clockwise direction!”  Which of course, he really had no frame of reference for and would not have found the least bit enlightening.

Even though telling time on a clock face is second nature to me, my son has grown up with a distinct lack of them. There might be a few scattered here and there in his life, such as at the library, but not enough to make any impact upon him. He doesn’t even have one in his classroom.

So try explaining to someone totally unfamiliar with the concept of an old-timey (yes, yes, it makes me feel old, too) clock and how it works, and you are met with a blank stare. And possibly a question as to why anyone would use such a complicated time-telling device when you could just look at the numbers on a digital clock. 

We struggled a bit.

Eventually, of course, he got it, but I began wondering if telling time this way was already pretty much obsolete. And if, in this age of computers and cell phones, if reading a clock face is a skill that needs an entire math chapter devoted to it.

What do you think?

Things I Hate: Baby Wipe Warmers

 

Baby wipe warmer

A distant acquaintance of mine was recently waxing rhapsodic about a baby item she felt she could not do without. She was talking about her baby wipe warmer.

Say what?

I cannot think of a piece of baby gear that is more superfluous, and yes, wasteful, than the electric baby wipe warmer. I think it is a common misconception for new mothers to want “the best” for their babies, and by god, no nasty room temperature wipe is going to touch their precious kids’ bottoms! Not if they have anything to say about it!  And boy, has the Baby Industrial Complex stepped up to deliver anything and everything a mom might want, regardless of whether she actually needs it.

I often wonder how the pioneers crossing the continent would have felt about this particular motherly concern. Oh yeah, right, they didn’t even HAVE anything like baby wipes for their children, and I think they would have probably smacked us modern mothers upside the head at some of the things we worry about. I can see it now, “Tobias, we absolutely cannot cross over those mountains unless you can guarantee me I’ve got a way to warm up little Mildred’s burlap squares*!”  Not to say there aren’t some very nifty things, but a wipe warmer isn’t one of them. 

People say, but oh, my baby screams like a banshee when I wipe her bottom with a cold wipe! Newsflash! Many newborns scream like a banshee at many, many things, and being naked and exposed will do that to a person, especially one who just spent the last nine months all cozy-like curled up in the womb. Chances are it has little to do with the wipe.  The time frame for this type of response is actually very short, and not worth spending the money on a wipe warmer.  And if you have an older child that still does that, just tell them they need to suck it up.

HOWEVER, because I am nothing if not compassionate,  if you are worried that your little snookum’s poopy bum will be unable to cope with a wipe that doesn’t feel like an electric blanket, I have an eco-conscious and energy saving tip.

Use your hands to hold the wipe and/or wipes as you undress your child.  By the time you are ready to get down to business, voila!  You have gotten the wipes to a nice non booty-offending temperature.  And best of all, it cost you absolutely nothing!

*Not that I have any knowledge of what they used for wipes in the pioneer days.  It could have been old pieces of clothing, or leaves for all I know.

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