Friday, January 29, 2010


Much has happened since the last time I updated my blog, Christmas and the start of a new decade. January is almost over and it's been quite a month. It's week two into the ADHD meds for Samuel. Week one we saw great focus changes but a lot of irritability, lack of sleep and not eating. Week two the side effects have waned but he's back to the same issues. This week it was back to the same behaviors at school, talking in the hall, talking too much during class, chasing someone around the class with a trashcan(?), not following directions, blah, blah. You get the idea. Homework has been the usual nightmare. Mornings, no better .

I was watching him getting ready for school yesterday. He has no trouble with the actual getting out of bed. It's the getting the clothes on, breakfast, brushing the teeth,putting the shoes on where the difficulty is. The kid gets distracted by anything. And when I mean anything, I mean anything. He has one sock on, and he sees his light saber. Suddenly, he is the middle of a fight with an invisible jedi. Five minutes later, he is still up there with one sock on. He comes downstairs to eat breakfast. His sister is eating. She starts singing a song. This song makes him think about his electric piano that has no batteries. He runs upstairs to look for some. While upstairs, he sees his light saber again. I could go on and on. By the time we get to school, everybody is worn out. Samuel, because he knows that doing these things should be easy. And he feels dumb because he can't.
One day, after a particularly hard day, he looked at me and said, "I wish you weren't normal so you could feel how I feel." It's heartbreaking.

So, this is why we began the medication. Our doctor did say that most people do see changes on stimulants at the beginning. But they don't always continue. Our next appointment is not until the end of February. I think we will continue him on this for a bit longer so we really can get a feel for how he is doing on it.

I'm discouraged. I know this is just the beginning of our journey on medication. But, I'm already tired. I am going to fill out the paperwork for Waldorf and see how much financial aid we get. I am still not convinced that Waldorf is the place for him. But is public school? Sometimes, I wish God could just send me an e-mail with some instructions. Because right now, I'm confused.

Here are some pics from the last few months.

Friday, December 11, 2009


I am sitting in the waiting room at the university while Samuel is being tested. The woman who is doing the testing is a doctoral student, working under a psychologist. She seems like a very thourough likable lady who interacts well with children. Samuel is a little trooper. He woke up and we were out the door before the sun came up. He is excited about missing two whole days of school.

George and I visited the Waldorf school on Wednesday. It was indeed an interesting experience. The first classroom we visited was the 1st grade. The teacher is a man around thirty. The classroom is extremely simple in decor, no overload of color. The desks are old fashioned wood. There is a chalk board with beautiful drawings that the teacher makes daily that go along with the main lesson. When we walked in he was telling them a story of an eagle. He was very animated in his story telling. The kids were engaged, answering and asking questions. Everything was very orderly. The kids all raised their hands before talking. Then they all got into the middle of the class for some circle singing and dancing. All of them knew the words and the movements. Again, they were all engaged laughing and smiling.

Both George and I noticed that the kids seemed content. They were not rushed. The schedule on the board was clear. I liked seeing a big recess block of time. They also had games, German, handwork and music in the daily schedule. They bring their lunches in woven baskets. Everything was very simple and natural.

I am not without my reservations. I'm not sure how Samuel would do with so much oral teaching. In the younger grades they do a lot of hands on activities to reinforce the skills. If we commit to this school, we will have to commit for the long haul. It's not something you do for a year or two and put them back in a regular school. If you do this, they will be behind. Waldorf starts off slow. This is one of the things that appeals to me. Another thing is that it is the teacher that accepts the child. Samuel would have to go in for a three day trial. The teacher could observe him to see if they fit each other. Because the teacher moves up for at least three years with these kids, he needs to make sure it's going to be a match.

So, that's where we are. I am hoping that this testing will help us in our decision making. If there are some significant learning disabilities, I'm not sure if Waldorf would be the best fit. We'll just continue on our journey knowing that God is with us every step.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas has begun

I'm tired. We decorated the house, made salt dough ornaments and Christmas cookies. I need another weekend to unwind.

Samuel has a hard time around holidays. Every kid gets excited. That's normal. But Samuel's little engine is reving up so high, and he just can't seem to shift into a lower gear. And we all suffer. I lost it so many times this weekend. When he gets into modes likes this, we just don't know what to do. It's hard to punish him when for the most part he can't control himself. I watched him in action from the kitchen while he was watching a movie with his sister. Everytime a commercial came on, he would do something to irritate her. I saw him jump full force on to her from his couch to hers, clap his hands over and over in her face, take her doll throw it across the room. The list could go on and on. When he's calm and not anxious, he can control most of these behaviors but lately, not so much.

As excited as I am about Christmas, days like yesterday and today make me dread it. He's got two more weeks of school to get through. And so do I.

Here are some pictures of the weekend. The cookies and ornaments are 100% kid decorated. The cookies are made with all natural coloring so that's why they look so pastel. Both kids thouroughly enjoyed the activities.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


If I get through the next few weeks, I'll either be Super Woman, will have to turn to serious drinking or I'll trust God to take care of us during a crazy time. Maybe all three?

Next week we have an ekg for Samuel, his weekly occupational therapy, karate on Tuesday and Thursday, George and I visit the Waldorf school on Wednesday, I'm teaching cycle at the gym Wednesday and Friday nights, and Friday we go to Athens for Samuel's psychological testing. AHHH!  Plus I have six students in six different schools that I need to see each one twice next week. And Christmas shop and bake and decorate? Yeah, right!

So, I'm a little stressed. Good things are happening but everything seems to be coming at us at once. I am excited about visiting the Waldorf school. I have talked to quite a few people about it. One is my cousin whose son has been at Waldorf since he was three. He is now in the sixth grade and they both love it. I am planning on going with an open mind and hopefully will get answers to my many questions.

All I know is that the public school system is not working for my boy. I feel like it is stifling his spirit. Sure, he goes off every morning without too much trouble. But I see the defeat in him when I pick him up. I'm not sure what the answer is. We have really been praying that God guide this decision. Money is a big issue. But I truly feel that if this is the right path, God will provide.

I'll update after our visit on Wednesday.

Monday, November 30, 2009


Some pictures just warm my heart. This is one of them.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Our tummies are full, the kitchen is clean, and the kids are watching a movie. It was quiet around here today. We missed having Tony. It did give me some time to reflect on just how blessed we are.

I'm thankful for this little girl. She's full of life, often grumpy, stubborn, loooves her daddy, her best friend Joy, candy, and her princess bed.

I'm thankful for this little boy. He's smart, creative, head strong, decisive, sensitive, genuine, energetic and has the ability to make me absolutely crazy.

I'm thankful for this young lady. She's funny, getting more and more comfortable in her own skin, loves her friends, creative, and more full of potential than she'll ever know.

I'm thankful for my husband. He's smart, handsome, loving, God-fearing, wise, teachable, and hairy. :) He has helped me become a more confident and strong woman.

I'm thankful for our new house. The kitchen is wonderful to cook in. The creek is perfect for the kids. The basement perfect for all their toys. The deck is perfect for entertaining. I can relax and have a sense of peace here.

I'm thankful for my job. I'm thankful that I can minister to hurting children and their parents. I'm thankful that I am often the only light they see.

I'm thankful for my extended family. I sure missed them today. I'm thankful for our dysfunction. I'm thankful that we are beginning to be more and more
honest with each other.

I'm thankful for a loving God. Thankful for his grace. Thankful for his forgiveness.

Sometimes I loose perspective. God has blessed us immensely. And I am so thankful.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Today, Samuel had his first belt test in karate. I'm not sure how how the colors go. I think he is trying to earn a red stripe on his white belt. This means that he has learned the first thirteen essentials of Karate. With Samuel's coordination problems, karate has not been easy but he is slowly making progress. It has been a big commitment for us, both in time and money. You'll see his teacher in the video. He is great, extremely patient and encouraging. All the teachers that work under him are his former students. He has designed a whole new program for ADHD kids that will start in January. Samuel was his inspiration to start it. The classes will still be twice a week but a little shorter and they will work on attention and focus with karate mixed in there.

Here are the videos. The last part of the 2nd one, the teacher just talks to Samuel about his strengths. He really is an amazing teacher.

Karate 1

Karate 2