Thursday, July 28, 2011


If I could bet on one sure thing around here it is constant change. As soon as I wrote that things seemed to going well, the tides change. Yesterday was probably the most difficult day I have had with the kids in the last 5 months. It all started around 5 am as usual. After Cruz's protein shakes we did about 30 minutes of swinging and we wore the deep pressure vest for just as long. The morning progressed with 'organized' fun and we worked on some speech therapy and occupational therapy. We did puzzles, playdoh, bubbles, read books, built towers with blocks, did our deep pressure rocking on balls. I pulled out about every trick I could think of. By the time we finished it all it was only noon! The kids both were tired so I tried to get them down for naps. Wren slept a whole 45 minutes and Cruz never could fall asleep. The afternoon took a turn for the worse and by 2:30 I thought I would lose my marbles. Cruz became very aggressive with me and Wren with pushing, hitting, and now his 'hugging'. Because he wants to put deep pressure on his stomach, he will 'hug' her from behind, knock her down and lay on her back. It looks like something you'd see on the Animal Planet. She tries to crawl away and he just pushes her down. She cries, then he cries. So now when he tries to pull her hand to play with him she runs to me. He gets his feelings hurt and cries. His behavior yesterday was defiant and aggressive. He was throwing things at me... I tried a movie and snack, hoping he would be able to fall asleep. No success. By 4pm, I knew that I didn't want him to nap at this point or he'd be up all night. The kids were literally crawling up the walls. Like, literally stacking things and trying to climb the walls. We had already had multiple screaming fits. I had tried to stay inside with them earlier because it was so hot.  I couldn't take ten more minutes, so we threw our suits on and went outside. I knew if we could just get out of these tiny four walls they would be distracted. I grabbed my camera and something really magical happened. Our perspectives all began to change. It is something that I am not quite sure how to describe other than to show some of the 600 photos that were taken in an hour. Everytime I wanted to say, 'no, wait', 'get down', 'don't do that', 'don't push', 'wait your turn',  I instead kept snapping pictures in an attempt to get that money shot. I kept an arm close by for safety and there were definitely some times that I thought, 'This isn't good, I should stop' but we made it through. 

Cruz wanted to put all of the chalk in the sprinkler.... which turned it into paint

So we just kept rinsing off in the sprinkler

Let me just add that I was running as fast as I could while taking pictures to get there for this one... just in case.

 So after the sprinkler, the chalk, the swings, and slide... they decided to play in the sand. I personally can't stand the feeling of dry sand on wet skin. It is like nails on a chalk board for me.... My kids? Oh no. My sensory kids ate it up. Literally.

I was pushing Wren in the swing and caught a glimpse of Sneaky McSneakers under the slide.
 And really, why stand next to the sand soaking wet when you could roll in it. Like a giant sugar cookie.

 And what's better than rolling in it? How about face planting into it?
 And of course... eating it.

After you've gotten wet, painted blue across your body, and rolled in dry sand, what's next? Rinse and Repeat.

So for that one hour outside, the kids were free and crazy. I wish it ended there. The end, beautiful story. Unfortunately, those little sugar cookies had to be carried against their will into a shower with mommy to have sand scrubbed out of every nook and cranny. Let me just jump through the torturous ending and tell you that they cried, screamed, whined, until they fell asleep that night. And then mommy collapsed. There are so many bizarre things that go on during the day and it is sometimes very tense around here. But for some reason, when I am holding that camera in my hand and holding my tongue long enough to get a good shot. I see them as beautiful photographs and pieces of art. The pictures are deceiving. You can't tell that ten seconds before Cruz pushed her into the sprinkler face down on the ground or that there was screaming and fighting. You stop and notice the amazing beauty of light and contrast. You can probably hear the sound of laughter and squeeling. You probably can't feel that it was literally like 100 degrees and we were being attacked my mosquitos. You probably focused on the smiles, the smooth skin, and those long eye lashes. It is amazing how the camera can change your perspective. I should just always keep it slung over my shoulder so that in those moments of wild and crazy, I am forced to be still and change my perspective.

Monday, July 25, 2011

The Sprinkler

 I haven't posted anything in a while because quite honestly, I have not been feeling inspired. I have not been feeling inspired to do anything. Cooking, cleaning... I think it may be the oppressive heat. With Cruz, we seem to be taking two steps forward, one step back. When we seem to be having a good day, suddenly it changes on a dime. Then after a bad day we have a few really good days. But I did want to share this really good story. It is actually from two weeks ago but the day after was when we were down at kamp, so I had mentally moved on.  So the story goes like this... Cruz has never drawn with sidewalk chalk. Ninety percent of the time he will line them up in a row or carry a few around. I will draw things next to him and point out letters, shapes, numbers, and he comes along and lines the chalk up. I would do hand over hand and make him draw and he would let me but as soon as I finished, he was done. There just has never been an interest. Well, lately in the evenings Jason and I have been setting up and moving sprinklers around the front and backyard. On this Saturday evening, we set the box of chalk out as usual, expecting Wren to try to eat it and for Cruz to line it up. However, Cruz grabbed the chalk and began to furiously scratch lines on the driveway in an arch. Jason and I watched in amazement. He looked up at us and signed water with his hand and then pointed to the sprinkler. We were absolutely amazed! I ran inside and grabbed the camera. We cheered and clapped and he was so proud of himself. Since then anytime the chalk comes out he draws the sprinkler again and signs water. Sometimes he'll rub it on his legs and on Wren. Then he promptly begins to line them up afterwards and change directions. We have never gotten him to draw anything else, but we are very proud of the progess!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Just a day at the office

Many of you may or may not know this, but Jason works at Kanakuk Kamps in Branson, Missouri. J also runs Resolution Gear, which is what most of you already know. At Kamp, he is normally behind the scenes. This past Sunday, Jason had the opportunity to share a little bit of his story with the brand new boys that had arrived just the day before. Since it was Sunday we decided to all head down together as a family to spend a little time together. If you saw me in the background of the video I was trying to keep Wren from riding the dog and Cruz from climbing up the rocks. The kids had a blast. Daddy took us around on the golf cart. Cruz couldn't understand why he could do the slip n'slide with the big kids, or jump on the blob, but they really did good and enjoyed the diversion. New places, new people, new adventures. We managed to sneak some therapy into everything as well. A little deep pressure on the swings, tactile therapy with all the rocks, physical therapy climbing over and under obstacles... overall it was very successful. We ran into our good friends, Shane and Nikki and their kids. We stopped by their house before heading out to see their chicken coop. Cruz and Wren both loved it!

Jason sharing with the guys

This girl has no inhibition whatsoever

Cruz could probably have spent hours lining up and organizing the rocks

Jason telling the story of these boots, of all of the places they've been and the things that they have seen.

It may look like a putt putt course to others, but sure looks like occupational therapy to me!

...never to be outdone by her brother...