mellymell: (Default)
Monday I had a parent/teacher conference (annual thing). Tuesday, I met with an Educational Consultant from Vanderbilt who had come to evaluate all the kids in the classrooms at his school.

The Good )

The Not-So-Good-But-Not-Necessarily-Bad )

So, those are my current parenting joys and challenges. And speaking of the kiddo, it's time to pick him up from school... early... because OMGMOARSNOW! *grumble*
mellymell: (Default)
It might be best that I waited until morning to write this. I could use some happy this morning. I sleept hardly at all last night and the sleep I did get was on a folded up futon because I got squeezed out of bed by Chris and the cat. So, I'm pretty much an animated corpse today. *grumpy yawn*

Yesterday I awoke to no white stuff outside. Drizzly rain, sure, but none of the forecasted ice and no more snow. YAY! Also, words can not express how happy I was to see not only above freezing temps, but actually low 50s!

I got to hang out in Jonah's class for about an hour. Was really fun to see a glimpse of what he does and how he interacts. A couple of kids got really comfortable with me right away. One little girl (who I think is the tallest kid in the class, seriously, she looks like a 6 year old!) and a little boy, EJ, who I've referenced here before. Blake, the little girl, kept asking me to "watch this" and would do some odd thing only a 4-year-old would think to do. EJ, in the midst of playing, would come running up to me and say, "hold this, don't let anyone get it" and put something in my hand, like a phone they were using as a walkie-talkie. As we were getting ready to leave, Blake came up to me and asked, "could we have a playdate sometime?" Knowing I've got all these Monkey's Treehouse passes to use and that the kids are about to be out for 3 weeks over the holidays, I waited around and mentioned it to her mom and we swapped numbers. We're going to shoot for the week between Christmas and New Year's.

I'm proud of myself on that one for two reasons. One, I have a lot of social anxiety and ordinarily would have just paid Blake lip service and told her to have her mom get in touch with me, knowing the likelihood of her following through would be slim. Two, I can pretty much tell right away I'm not going to have much in common with her mom. But Blake and Jonah seem to enjoy playing together and that's really what it's all about. It's sort of hard to get over that as a parent, though. You want to like your kid's friends' parents because you're going to be stuck hanging out with them while the kids play (at least at this age). But sometimes, you just have to recognize when kids really enjoy playing together and make the best of it.

Also, jerk chicken and black beans and rice for dinner. YUM!
mellymell: (Default)
A lengthy, photo heavy entry on our trip to Asheville is festering in the browser on my laptop, but there's other stuff going on... mostly gardening.

Today, we had to bid farewell to our largest tree. I noticed while I was out in the yard with Jonah on Monday that it was leaning considerably. We've been keeping an eye on it for a couple of seasons; watching it lose large branches & develop holes between the roots & the soil. A guy came out to look at it yesterday morning & suggested we get it cut out as soon as possible. The tree had three leads that met on about a 2 or 3 foot tall trunk. The lead that aimed directly at our neighbours' house had developed a crack all the way through the trunk to the ground. I'm honestly not sure what was still holding it up. Once we accepted his bid, he called up his climber to come out & help him tie it off to one of the other two leads, which were still sturdy & healthy, so it wouldn't fall on our neighbours' house overnight before they could get back out this morning. Now there's a huge hole in the yard & I don't just mean the one in the ground. The whole yard is changed it seems. We're going to go out this weekend & find the biggest maple we can get to replace it.

On the plus side, while they were out here, we had them cut out the burning bush which was way too big of a shrub to be where it was (I had to severely prune it twice each spring), as well as the two holly stumps that WILL NOT DIE! Both of those had been cut out before we bought the house. Both stumps kept sprouting up from the roots. One was in the front garden where I wrestled with its roots every spring & fall as I was planting. I'm very glad to have those all gone! I also just realized that was the last of the landscaping that was done before we got our hands on this place. All prior foundation plantings are now gone. I can now finish putting in the rest of the 8 flats of pansies I started planting last weekend, unobstructed by stupid holly roots.

Also, we just now have the first tomatillos on our plant. Lots of them! Hope they finish before frost.

Other than that:
I'm wrestling with fabric options for my bridesmaid dress (wants vs budget vs fabric snobbery) as I begin putting together my mockup.

Jonah's potty tra ining is still going well with slow but frequent improvement.

We've got one more "free" weekend before we pretty much have stuff every weekend until the end of the year.

We finally have another soccer game this weekend. We missed 2 weeks ago & last weekend was a bye. I'm sure Jonah has missed it.

Jonah's teacher asked me about my jewelry yesterday which sent me scrambling to renew expired listings after handing her a business card. I'm utterly embarrassed by how much I've neglected that stuff. I've got a ton of stuff that needs to be photographed & listed. A ton of stuff that I made almost a year ago & never listed. Yes, it's despicable. My last entry on my jewelry blog was freaking lamp pulls! Maybe I can squeak out an hour or two per week to devote to this. Agggh! Too much stuff, no time!

I'm just not even going to think about writing again until after the new year. Okay, one quick thing: it's important that my romance is just something to get readers emotionally invested in the characters & that it doesn't become the focus of the story. A romance is not a plot! I refuse to even open my document for fear of getting sucked in (or seeing how bad it is after some distance). After talking to some people about it at Dragon*Con, I realize just how many questions are still unanswered. I've only scratched the surface here. Huge project is ENORMOUS! I think my next big question to answer will be "why is there a war & how does that all fit in?" I've got to stop filing these away under "answer eventually" & start picking them off one by one until the blanks are filled.

I suppose I'll stop rambling & relax some tonight. The weather is absolutely gorgeous lately, if not a little chilly for my tastes at night. Having the windows open during the day has been nice, except for today when I was inundated by the smell of two stroke engines. Maybe I'll get the Asheville post fished up tomorrow.

Posted via LjBeetle
mellymell: (he told me to burn things)
This is too long for a #ThingsJonahSays hashtag on Twitter, but too hilarious not to document!

A school day with Jonah... I can only assume. )
mellymell: (Default)
There's a lot going on right now, as evidenced by my lack of posting here, I think. I've been active over on my costuming journal, mostly in preparation for Dragon*Con. But other than that, I just can't seem to squeeze out enough time to write up a post. I start and then I don't ever get around to finishing it. So, maybe I'll compartmentalize and the most important stuff will get up here and the rest, well... who knows.

Lots of stuff going on with Jonah right now, so I'll start there. )
mellymell: (Default)
I was dreading this. Last year's was just kind of disheartening. But then again, last year's class was all around disheartening. He was in a class of all girls and accused of being overly rambunctious in that he'd snatch toys and run around without regard to whom he might knock over in his path. Yeah, uhm, HE WAS 2!

This year's class has been polar opposites on all counts. His teachers are laid back and have boys of their own. His class is all boys, so they're all kind of on the same level. And best of all, his teachers consider him to be in line with the rest of the kids as far as social development goes. I was so utterly relieved to hear that not only do they not have trouble understanding him but they consider him to have a fantastic vocabulary.

The only areas they said he'll need to work on over the summer to be ready for the next class is to stay the course with the potty training and transitioning from one activity to the next (he has a tendency to resist when he's not ready to switch to the next thing). They said showing him what he's about to do helps a lot. Like when they want him to go to the potty, they show him the Skittles he'll get as a reward for going and then he's willing to go. It's all in that realm of getting involved in play and not wanting to stop to do what he needs to do.

One area in which he's even a little ahead is that he can look through a book on his own and kind of knows the gist of the story from the pictures. Seriously, reading to your kids on a regular basis pays off! The most brutal punishment I've ever thrown down was taking away his bedtime story. You should have seen and heard the sobs and tears that night. He even tried to throw a guilt trip at me with "you making me sad!" between sobs and wiping away tears followed by "don't be angry, be happy." I made sure he knew I loved him, even if I was angry, but he went to bed without a story that night and it totally devastated him. He cried for like 20 minutes that night. We have not had a storyless night before or since, unless he was already passed out somewhere and I didn't want to wake him for one.

Anyway, I'm very happy with the report I just got. Giddy even. The week thus far had been pretty blah between the weather and the lull after [ profile] branflake left yesterday afternoon. Now I'm ready to bound up the stairs and start working on a bolero mockup. *digs through emails for measurements*
mellymell: (rainbow at island in the sky)
Was Jonah's first day in a new class at school. I recognize at least one little boy from the summer class. But they're ALL boys (except on Thursday there's one girl). As it turned out, one of the teachers we met last week isn't going to be there indefinitely (her husband is very sick). So, there was a new teacher, plus a substitute that I remembered from Jonah's class in the spring. I dropped him off without incident, even though there was another boy that broke into tears as his daddy left.

During the day, I heard the great news, ALEP 2011!!!!! I'm so excited!

I spent most of the day fighting the urge to plan/start on costumes (not for ALEP, but for the various other costumed events coming up) and starting on planning and gathering things for our trip to Florida on Thursday (camping on St. Joseph's Peninsula through Sunday, taking a break from packing and cleaning to write this).

When I went to pick Jonah up, they had exciting news, he peed in the potty!! That's something he's not done at home yet, but I guess seeing several other boys do it, he wanted to as well. Peer pressure might be a great thing in the realm of potty training. I'm going to really jump into it when we get back from our trip to see if we can get some more consistency.

Also, the lady that had been a substitute in his class before just went on and on about how much he's grown up and how much more mature and knowledgeable he seems to be from just a couple of months ago. She assumed I had been really working with him over the summer. Well, I have worked a bit recently on the numbers, shapes and letters (which she mentioned seemed much better). But just in general, I think he's gotten better at communicating and I don't know if it's from him being home with me for a month where I've got no one to talk to but him (so he's gotten more conversational and started enunciating better and speaking more clearly) or if it's just something that's happened organically. My mother-in-law remarked on that when he stayed with them a couple of weeks ago as well (how much more he's talking, conversationally, rather than broken sentences and random words that you may or may not understand). She seemed just really enthusiastic with how well he was doing.

One thing though, I forgot to pack Giraffie. I even relabeled him for school yesterday morning, but Jonah then wanted to play with him and he didn't make it into the backpack before we left the house. So, they had a little bit of trouble getting him to settle for a nap, but he still slept fine without him (which he's done a few times before).

I'm excited about this year at preschool. It seems like they're doing more teaching rather than babysitting at this age. That was something I was kind of disappointed in with this school before, so my attitude has really changed all of a sudden. They just must not work with the younger ones until they're almost 3.

Chris is making fun of me for packing my pirate gear to get pictures on the beach. He called me a huge nerd. How can pirates be nerds, I ask!? C'mon, what's the point of putting together the costumes if you're not going to wear them, pose for pictures and play around a little with them? I'm excited, even if he is a stick in the mud about it. :P And yes, I'm totally copying [ profile] jkg_vader, with this. ;)
mellymell: (me at arches 2005)
I just dropped Jonah off for his first day of preschool. He took to it like a fish to water. In a room full of toddlers, half of which were sobbing at the sudden disappearance of their mothers, the other half looking confused and not knowing what was going on, Jonah was a beacon of distraction. He immediately grabbed a toy off the shelf, went to the table and began to play as I gave him a hug and a kiss and a wave goodbye and took my leave to fill out paperwork. Maitane (our neighbor with a daughter in one of the classes under him) said she'd check on him as she dropped Maya off and he was still just fine, playing and not really noticing I had left.

It was an unexpected thing. I got a call yesterday afternoon from the director saying they were maneuvering some kids around to make some spots in the toddler class for the handful of those on the waiting list. We discussed it and took one day a week, Tuesdays. I guess for the rest of the summer, this is going to be my "get shit done" day, at least between 9am and 3pm. If the house is not sparkling by the end of the day, I have no excuse!


mellymell: (Default)

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