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Three Little Birds…Were In Canyon’s School Hallway…

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Things that have made me happy lately.

Canyon’s teacher Mandi took me up my offer to volunteer in Canyon’s classroom. Yay! My first project was homework-she sent home a huge pile of laminated sheets that she needed cut up so they could be assembled into communication folders and projects for her students. Easy! The next time I came to school and actually assembled the books for her. Once I finished she asked if I minded hanging out in the classroom and playing with the kids in the play center while she and the classroom aides worked one on one with students. Yes please! It was great to spend time with Canyon’s classmates and get to see how the day is run for everyone. And it is interesting to see how Canyon behaves in a classroom setting. How fascinating to see him use his picture schedule and follow directions in class.

Then Mandi asked if I would come in again and I said, “Sure. What will I be working on?” “More cutting and velcro and would you mind working on the bulletin board?” My heart skipped a beat. “You want me to decorate the bulletin board?!” “Yes, do you mind?” “Um, I would love to! What’s my theme?” “Spring.” “On it.”

I spent the weekend looking at Pinterest for inspiration. On Sunday night I remembered the very cool paper I had in the garage. It’s the packing paper for diapers from Amazon and I store it out in the garage to use for the fire pit. But I knew in my heart it would make a pretty kick ass tree.

So on Monday I was given a large board in the hallway that had been prepped with background paper and a boarder but the rest was up to me. Armed with a scissors, a stapler and full access to the art supply closet and I was ready to begin.

I started with the basic tree and leaves. Yeah. My leaves were green and purple. Because purple is pretty and it was my tree! While I was working I found myself whistling “Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley. A theme was forming…Then it was time for the parent support group so I worked on the birds during the meeting. I wanted to include all the kids names from the morning and afternoon classes so I had to finish some of the pieces at home. I found myself decorating individual flowers for each child-16 all together.

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The next morning I hung all the flowers and finished off the theme-“Don’t Worry About A Thing, Cause Every Little Thing Gonna Be All Right!” I wrote in the lyrics to the song. My goal is to have everyone whistling or humming it as they walk down the hall.

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I love volunteering at the school. It feels good to walk confidently down the school hallway and being able to say hi to the staff by name. And I want the school to know that I am as invested in the school as they are in Canyon. I guess they got the message because the principal called me into her office last week to ask if I would be willing to serve on the local school council next year, basically the PTA. Of course I would! And I will be assisting with the school celebration for Autism Awareness Day. I am also hoping to start a Facebook page for parents and a blog for the school garden!

I finished the door in time for family night at school. It is so kind that they try to include the whole family in events but seriously, bringing the twins with turned it from “Technology Night” to “Watch John and Laurie chase three kids around” night. The kids all had fun exploring the super cool classrooms with their legos and art supplies, sensory tubs and toys. But they were a distraction to the planned agenda and were kind of making a mess. It was time to go.

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Making Space…Finding Time…

I miss my blog. I know I will regret not being able to easily look back at the last few months and see what we were up to. But it is hard to find the space to create and time to write in this life of mine.

John has been looking for work since the end of July and so far no luck. In some ways having him home all the time makes life easier, especially when you have three little kids. It is nice to be able to grocery shop and run errands without having all three kids with. Taking Canyon to and from school would be a much bigger challenge if one parent had to take all three kids on that journey. And I am free to volunteer at Canyon’s school, take Lilo for long walks and go out at night with friends because I always have free child care!

So I appreciate that help. But I do miss having time to myself. Oh yeah. And an income would be nice too! (Side note-if anyone has any job leads in the Chicago area for John please let me know. I am also interested in special projects and gigs for myself. I like to keep my brain fresh!)

And there always seems to be work to be done. I tell myself I will be able to focus and write once the dishwasher is loaded and running. But while I am working on that I notice how dirty the floor is so I better sweep that up. Then I see the playroom floor and it is covered in toys. Not an exaggeration. Right now I am sitting on the playroom chair in the sun trying not to look over and see the HUGE MESS all around me.

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I will focus on the sunshine and my screen and start to share some of the highlights of our lives.

But then there is Facebook to check and funny youtube videos to watch and oh now Canyon wants to feed me Goldfish crackers and I should get some more coffee and since the twins are asleep I could walk over to the library with Canyon and pick up that book I have on hold…

No more excuses! I will post some photos! I will write something! Anything! Aiiiggghhhh!!!!!

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Rising With The Moon

February 24. I needed to get out of the house. It had been a good day at home-playing with the kids, good food, baking 7 layer magic bars and cookies-all peaceful activities. But I still felt a bit anxious. So at 4:45pm I threw on my boots, grabbed the dog and headed for the lake.

I remember driving along, worrying or obsessing over one of the many things going on in my life when all of a sudden I looked up and saw the moon, shining bright in the still pink sky. It honestly took my breath away. I let out a deep sigh and suddenly everything was ok again.

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It felt good to walk with just Lilo. We move fast and cover more ground than we do when the whole family is along. I felt like I found my stride again.

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Note to men:
If I see you coming up behind me I will stop so that you get in front of me. And if it is dark and we are alone I will change course so that I am not caught in a dark, secluded area with you. For example-the path around the bird sanctuary past the breakwater and back to my van. I respect my safety and my valuable camera equipment too much to take chances. Don’t give me a look like you are insulted that I chose not to walk with you and instead took the long way around through a more populated area. It’s nothing personal. But you did look creepy and you were paying a bit too much attention to me. So there.

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It was a great walk and the perfect reminder to not get too caught up in the day to day. I have been months behind on my blog and I have decided instead of my usual waiting three months while I catch up to just start where I am. Well, sort of. It’s March 7 now but I really liked the photos from that evening and wanted to share. So I will start from that beautiful almost full moon and move on and let the past be the past. Maybe. Maybe I will actually have time to put in all the great memories from the rest of January & February-there were many and they deserve their time on this page but for now I will do what I can. Because that is all I can do. Excellent.

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