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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hello, Irene!

Hurricane Irene reared her ugly head early this morning.  So far we have one LARGE branch down in our back yard and many, many, many small branches everywhere else.  It will be a long clean up!

We are busy keeping busy with Leapsters...

and movies...and snacks!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Checking the Progress

We ventured out this morning to check on the progress of Irene.  She was still in North Carolina but the waves were building and the surfers were in heaven.  Many roads and beaches had begun to close.  There were lots of concrete barriers, plywooded buildings, and police action.  We even drove by the Coast Guard Station in Newport and noticed a LOT of action.  Everyone was busy preparing while we stopped for lunch and headed home for naps!

Tonight we are preparing a big meal...since we don't know IF we'll have power tomorrow.  We've also been busy making plans for sleeping during the storm.  With the number of trees around our house, we are a bit hesitant to send our child to sleep upstairs.  Not sure of the answer but we are thinking! 

So, here are a few shots of a little hike we took overlooking First Beach in Middletown today.

Love this...because we climbed right on the rocks!

Friday, August 26, 2011

The Calm Before the Storm

***Warning!!!!  Picture Heavy Post!!!!!***

We are in a holding pattern at the House of Sprout as we await the arrival of Hurricane Irene!  Daddy's annual camping trip has been cancelled.  Emergency supplies (translation = wine!) have been purchased.  The Weather Channel is on our television A WHOLE LOT!!!!

But all that said, we headed to the beach today to enjoy some waves and the nice weather before we have to hide in our house and wait for the winds to blow over the trees.  Enjoy our evening!

Bruiser was upset that the water got him!


Her mouth is ALWAYS going!

We'll keep you up-to-date as everything develops...just say a little prayer that we survive the hours trapped in our house! 

Monday, August 22, 2011

And A Lightbulb Went On!

For anyone that has followed our blog for a while, you are well aware of the many issues we have struggled with on a daily basis...first with Bruiser and then with Sassy.  They both started out with Early Intervention through an amazing facility in our local area.  Meeting Street School has provided us with endless resources, guided us through numerous evaluations and transitions, and provided support to each and every member of our family.  Our service coordinator, who has since switched positions within the school, has kept our family on her service list because she is so amazing!  This fall will be be the end of our third year with Meeting Street...and i honestly have no idea how we would have survived without them!  Sassy will age out of EI at the end of October but Bruiser will continue with out-patient therapy so we'll still be able to enjoy all our amazing friends!

But, I digress...

Back to those issues...while both children had a speech/language delay that qualified them for EI, other issues emerged as they continued to develop.  Just as Bruiser was turning 3, and aging out of EI, we discovered some concerns with sensory related problems.  Even with 10 years of teaching early childhood, I had never heard of "sensory processing" and immediately began to panic.  Luckily I had such amazing people to guide me through the next steps!  Through an out-patient evaluation, Bruiser was diagnosed with mild Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)...and I immediately began searching for anything and everything about this disorder.  I have been keeping Amazon and Google very busy for the past two years!  I ordered many books.  I read numerous blogs and websites.  I talked with endless therapists.

But here's the problem - SPD is fairly new in the educational and medical worlds.  It's also a huge area of development with very broad borders.  Each child with SPD can look so different.  This became even clearer to us when Sassy earned a similar diagnosis this past year...and she's nothing like Bruiser!  Oh, and then try to explain it all to someone else - whether it is the grandparents, the babysitter, the neighbor, or the sweet older lady at church.  Trust me, we've heard it all!  Bottom line is that much of what Bruiser presents with looks an awful lot like a behavior problem.  So you can imagine how this has affected my self-esteem as a mother!  It's been hard, really hard...and it seems to be getting harder as Bruiser grows and develops more issues.

So during one of my down moments, I revisited my bookshelf to see what I needed to reread.  That's when I found this book:

Parenting a Child with Sensory Processing Disorder: A Family Guide to Understanding and Supporting Your Sensory-Sensitive Child

I had ordered it back when he was diagnosed and never opened it...other books (and life!) took precedent.  Well, I sat down and read it in an afternoon on Saturday.  It was a great read...easy with lots of personal accounts of other families living the same life we are.  But the best part was the first chapter that explained and defined SPD.  It was the best explanation I have ever read of the disorder.  AND there was a chart that explained the differences that Sassy and Bruiser have within the same disorder.  AMAZING!  I am looking forward to sharing it with family and close friends...if a light bulb went on for me (and I'm living it everyday!), then I can't wait to help others that love my kids understand them better too!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A Touch of Nature

While we were visiting Papa and Mimi's Tater "caught" a caterpillar.  She made him a nice home in in an empty plastic pretzel container.  There were lots of leaves to munch on and a stick to climb.  We "googled" the caterpillar to make sure it could really turn into a butterfly (especially if Papa was going to let a creepy-crawly into his new house!) and discovered it should turn into a 'blue mammoth".  A day or two later...before we even headed home...the caterpillar disappeared and chrysalis appeared.  That little critter traveled the six hour drive home, spent the first day forgotten in the car, and then lived on our dining room table for the next week and a half.

Then one afternoon I heard Tater screech...the chrysalis had hatched and this is what we now had:

Yesterday we "released" the butterfly.  One of the wings is injured and it probably won't last very long but Daddy thought we should put it in the grass so it could "frolic" and enjoy it's short life!