Tuesday, August 3, 2010


The two big kids getting big. Crazy!

Max posing at the ranch

Tyler REALLY got into painting at the ranch.

Oh my goodness, look who is EATING NOODLES!!! HUGE!

Tia being sweet with the donkey at WHR.

A little dress up fun.

Perfect paparazzi picture!!

Tia and Tyler in red, white and blue at the 4th of July parade.

Tyler's Kindergarten graduation with his teacher and principal.

Well so much for writing more often. Sorry. Summers are just so busy around here. Kevin and I went to San Diego to celebrate our 13th wedding anniversary which will be on Monday. It was wonderful and weather was amazing!!! Nothing like sitting next to the ocean, reading a good book and having a cool breeze blowing. Fantastic. We rented a little beach cottage in Oceanside. It was really cute. I wanted to stay there forever and just ship my kids to us so we could all enjoy it. Max hasn't seen the ocean yet. Maybe next year we can all go.

This last weekend we took the kids to a ranch a few hours away. It's called Whispering Hope Ranch and it's a camp for children with special needs and their families. They have tons of animals. Cats, dogs, rabbits, ducks, geese, emu, a turkey, peacocks, goats, sheep, mules, horses, cows, llamas... Like I said, lots of animals. The kids had a blast and we met some great families. It always nice to meet other families and see what their children are doing. It helps motivate me to encourage my kids to be more independent and work on additional skills. One of my friends was saying her 8 year old is showering by herself. Have to say, I thought we were a few years from that. I have been teaching Tia to wash her own hair but her hair is long and she is NOT effective at rubbing the shampoo through it. So, we will work a little harder and see what happens. I think when it's your first child you are never sure what they should be doing by themselves. Max did start eating noodle while we were there though!!! SO HAPPY for that! We may progress out of pureed food someday after all. HOORAY!

School starts Monday. We picked out our school supplies today. Tyler is ready with his Buzz Lightyear backpack and Tia with her Hanna Montana backpack. Still on the hunt for good lunchboxes. We meet the teachers on Thursday. I'm trying not to stress to much. I do envy people who can enroll their kids in school and be done. No meetings, aides, arrangements, IEP's, worry about friends and teachers, etc. I know most moms worry about their kids so I try not to feel like I am too crazy for being anxious. Tia will start 3rd grade and Tyler will be in 1st grade. Same school as last year which is great. Just new teachers and possibly different aides. The kids are very well known at school so other teachers and administrators look out for them. I think my kids are the only children with Down syndrome at the school now.

Our school does not have a "skills program" which is the name for the self-contained classroom. It is at another school in our district so many of the other children with special needs attend the other school. We have been fortunate enough to have our kids in an inclusion setting that works well for us. They have one hour a day of resource or special instruction for math and reading. It has worked great so far so we hopefully this will be a successful year as well. I really just want them to have teachers who like them and challenge them and include them in the class activities. I'm not nervous for Max really. The preschool program is great. His teacher will be new this year so we will see if she has enough energy for Max. Ha ha.

So, that's our summer update I guess. I'll write more once school starts.


And patiently waiting... said...

Such cute pictures!!! Thanks for sharing them!

Beth said...

Looks like lots of fun!

A tip for independent showering: Get a mirror for the shower--one that hangs on the wall. Then Tia can see where she's missed shampoo. It really helped Hannah get the hang of it, but we didn't start independent showering until she was almost 11. Long hair is really difficult.

Shawnie said...

Thanks Beth. That's a great idea. Of course I will NEVER get her out of the shower if I hive her a mirror to dance and sing in front of. LOL.

anonymous me said...

One of the first things Haley asked for after we brought her home was a haircut! we happily obliged. We keep it a cute bob cut now, and it is much easier to wash. We also just got her a big plastic comb (with the big wide teeth) to use in the shower. first she scrubs with her fingers, then uses the comb to scrub the shampoo through. I'm also going to use the mirror idea! Your munchkins are getting so big! Hope to see you all at the buddy walk!

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