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Monday, October 24, 2011

And this is why I'm mostly always late for everything...

Last week Korban had a bacterial infection and pinkeye, so I kept him home from school today just to make sure all was well before sending him back.  He seemed much better, so I thought it might be okay for us to get out and run a couple of errands.  Getting ready to go anywhere with my crew is always a challenge, but I was feeling energetic and the stuff needed to be done, so we started getting ready.  First of all, I decided to put in Korban's eye drops.  That is normally a two-person job and if there were any other adults around that were strong enough and brave enough we would accept their help too.  I had Brad to help me over the weekend, but he was at work, so I was on my own.  I sort of knew what I was up against, because I tried it once without Brad's help over the weekend.  It did not go well.  Even when both of us are working together, we literally have to pretty much sit on Korban and Brad holds his eye open while I squirt the drop in.  Korban vacillates between screaming and laughing during this time.  I think he really does think we are funny, but man is he strong.  So the one time I tried it without Brad, Korban bucked me right off like an angry bull.  I'm pretty strong too, though.  I may have even held on for eight seconds.  Maybe I should try for a career in bull-riding.  I knew that same approach wouldn't work today, so I tried a modified leg-lock.  That worked pretty well.  If things don't pan out for me on the PBR circuit, maybe I could go with the WWE.  Hmmm...

After that drama, I decided to hop in the shower.  Selah tagged along to the bathroom with me.  Our bathroom has a stand-alone shower and a tub in the corner.  As I was getting in the shower, she was climbing into the bathtub.  I told her not to get in the bathtub and get her clothes wet (she's learning how to turn on the water.)  She was already dressed for the day, and I told her that if she got her clothes wet she would be In Trouble.  Because of previous experiences with my children, I have perfected the art of Rapid Showering.  Imagine my surprise when I hopped out of the shower a few minutes later to find her sitting in the tub with the water trickling, naked.  NAKED!  But, hey, her clothes didn't get wet, so she couldn't get in trouble, right?  She found the loophole.  Maybe she will be an attorney one day.  So I hurried and got dressed and then re-dressed Selah.  Korban was still in his pajamas, so I got ready to put his clothes on.  He didn't want to get dressed, so he started fighting me.  (Yes, I mean that literally.  When he doesn't want to do something like that, he slaps our hands away, scratches, pinches, etc.)  While I was wrestling his clothes on, I somehow managed to crack my pinky finger on the edge of the bathroom counter.  Had to waste more time jumping up and down and howling about that, but it's okay now.  I finished dressing Korban and turned back to Selah.  She had climbed up onto the handwashing stool, gotten the toothpaste, and smeared it across her cheeks like warpaint.  That took some scrubbing to get rid of, but at least she smelled minty fresh afterwards!  

After gathering up sippy cups and assorted paraphernalia, it was finally time to head out the door.  I opened the door to the van and noticed there was no car seat for Selah.  My mom had baby-sat her last Thursday while we took Korban to the dr, and we never got the seat back.  Selah hadn't been anywhere since then, and I had not even realized we didn't have it.  Fortunately, my mom lives close by.  I strapped Selah into Korban's booster, which has a five point harness, and tightened the straps to fit her.  Put his extra booster seat (which does NOT have a five point harness, meaning I don't like to use it) into the empty spot and belted Korban into it.  We drove down the road to my mom's house where we then played musical car seats.  I took Korban out, took out the spare booster, installed Selah's car seat, moved her from Korban's good car seat into her seat, and then strapped Korban into his seat after readjusting the straps to fit him again.  Whew!  And then we were off.  And I was exhausted.  So if you have ever wondered why we have trouble being on time for stuff, well, here's why!

Monday, September 12, 2011


Selah talks--a lot.  At least, it seems like a whole lot to us, probably because Korban didn't really talk at all until he was three, and he still struggles with communication.  So it seems amazing and miraculous to us to have a little one who talks so much.  She is pretty easy to understand, but she has a habit of just saying the first syllable of a world twice instead of the whole word.  It's pretty cute.  Here's a list of some  of the things she says:

Chick chick nug nug=Chicken nuggets
Fish fish=Fish sticks
Bean beans=Green beans
Pop Pop=Pop-Tart
Ronicheese=Macaroni and cheese
Ah-nen-oh-me-me-me= Anemone (Seriously--it's in one of her Baby Einstein books.  Has six syllables when she says it.  Hilarious!)
Cha-Cha=Her dear friend Charlie

Lately she has gotten in the habit of telling Korban "Stop dat!  Hear me?"  Oh my.  I don't even realize I say something so much until I hear it from the kids.  She also tells Korban to "go play" when he is aggravating her.  He says "Alright kiddos," at random intervals and it's funny to me.  Guess he hears that one a lot.  I call him "little man" sometimes. He has picked up on this and the other day he told my mom "Sit down, little man."  Boy was she surprised!

Also, Selah likes to compliment people.  It's sweet.  Her favorite thing to "like" is someone's shirt.  No matter what I'm wearing, she says "I yike dat shirt, Mama."  The other day we were outside, and she was playing with our dog Pat.  She told him "I yike dat tail, Pat-Pat."  I would've never thought to give the dog a compliment on his tail, but she is right.  He does have a very nice tail.  It's fuzzy and curls over his back right nicely.  And he doesn't wear shirts, so she needed to find something to compliment him on.

Tonight when we had our "dee-ocean" as she calls our devotion, she said prayers.  She wants to be like Korban.  She repeated whatever he said, and it was so sweet.  We helped her out with some things to say.  For example, we said "Bless Korban," and she said "Bless Tor-Tor."  (He pretty much thinks that's his name now.  When they are playing and it is his turn with a toy, he tells me "It's Tor-Tor's turn."  Maybe he just wants to make sure she understands.  Because heaven forbid there be any miscommunication with the turn-taking business.)  But back to Selah's prayers.  She said "Bless Mama," without us prompting her and I thought my heart would burst.  She also said "Bless baby, bless hairbow, bless duck park."  So that was her first "on her own" prayers and I don't ever want to forget it.  I also need to take her to the "duck park" really soon.  Tor-Tor too.

Speaking of being proud, Korban said out of the clear blue "I like the Rebels.  Ha-wee Ta-wee!" (Hotty Toddy!)  He is his father's son!  And tonight during prayers, the very last thing he said was "Bless sitting at the table eating Push-Ups."  Ha!  He is very fond of Popsicles.

Korban had a little stomach bug on Saturday.  By that night he didn't really have any symptoms except for a low-grade temp and he was kind of dragging around.  I was asking him questions like "Does your stomach still hurt?  Does your head hurt? Does your throat hurt?"  Finally he said to me very patiently "No more belly still hurt.  No more head hurt.  No more throat hurt.  I just sick."  That cleared it up.  I think that might be the longest thing he's ever said.  He was probably tired of me asking questions!  And today when we left school, he told his teachers good-bye.  When we got to the door, he turned back around and said "Bye friends."  So much cuteness.

Well, the kids have been asleep for a while now and for some reason I am still awake.  Considering that,  what with the sickness and all Saturday, I didn't even lay down until 5:30 Sunday morning, there is really no good reason for my eyes to still be open right now.  Good night all!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Organizational Skills

If you know me at all, you know that I am not an organized person.  But I want to be.  Somewhere inside me, there is an organized woman.  She just can't find her way out through all my clutter.  My household needs structure, organization, and my life in general needs less clutter.  It would be easier on all of us.  And I would like that.  So I have had a real brainstorm about meal planning and I thought I would share it.  I love to cook.  Really, I do.  But I hate it when I am scrambling at the last minute trying to throw something together and I am lacking an ingredient or I forgot to defrost the meat.  Also, we are trying to pinch pennies any way we can.  Our church recently had a couponing class and it was awesome.  So I have been collecting coupons and trying to wrap my head around all of that business.  I have an iPhone.  Those are powerful tools in the hands of organized people.  Mine mainly just confuses me.  But I am learning!  I like that little calendar feature.  I mainly use it to keep up with appointments, but my bright idea consisted of using it to streamline my meal planning.  Brad just got paid, which means I get to go grocery shopping.  (Yay!)  I planned out meals for the next two weeks and plugged the meals into my handy-dandy calendar as events.  So if I opened my calendar for September 2nd, it would say "Jambalaya."  Every event you enter has a spot for location, and in that box I put the name of the cookbook that the particular recipe is in.  I even set alerts to go off a couple of days in advance for all of the recipes that require defrosting meat so that I will remember to lay the meat in the refrigerator in time.  Additionally, I used the little note feature in my phone to make my grocery list.  I am forever making really great grocery lists and then leaving them at home, so this is pretty awesome for me.  I always have my phone with me; therefore, I always have my list.  I have my coupons ready to go, and I am ready to tackle the groceries stores tomorrow morning.  I'm hoping this works out well and is a system I can keep up with.  I know it sounds crazy, but I was pretty excited about it.  Anything to help us along.  Actually I was really excited about it.  I called my mom and said "Pick any date between now and September the 16th, and I'll tell you what we're having for supper that night."  "September 7th," she replied.  "Meatloaf!" I proclaimed.  She said "Wow!" like I had just done a really cool magic trick or something.  She was probably humoring me, but it made me feel good.  Also, she is going to help me shop tomorrow, which I really appreciate.  I bribed her with coupons for chocolate and Ben and Jerry's ice cream.  :)

In case anyone is wondering how family devotions are going, we read about Moses' staff turning into a snake tonight.  Both kids got excited and said "Nake, nake."  Hope they don't go looking for one.  Also, they had a short-lived but very lively brawl in the middle of the story and after that, Selah inserted a finger up each one of my nostrils.  But we made it through and afterwards they sat and looked at the Veggie Tales book together, so I think maybe they are getting into it.  Also, when we prayed Korban said "Bless coupons."  He knows about the coupons because he saw my stack of them and tried to scatter them, and I explained to him that I needed them for grocery shopping.  He does like the groceries, so maybe that is why he thought the coupons needed blessing.  Hope it helps me out tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Family Devotions Gone Awry: The Story of Moses in the Basket in the Desert

I have a really great story about our family devotional time, but I need to give some background information first.  Back in July, Selah had an ear infection.  She wasn't running fever, but she actually told me "ear hurt" and her tubes were draining.  We went to the dr right away and got medicine, and went on about our business.  After being on antibiotics for a couple of days, she woke up very early one morning with a really high fever.  I took her to the ER, and the dr decided to do a chest xray.  It came back showing a small spot of pneumonia.  He prescribed another antibiotic to go along with the one we were already on, and told me to follow up with our regular pediatrician.  Her fever went down as the day progressed, and she seemed to feel better.  We gave her the medicine, and went to her pediatrician several days later for a re-check.  She ordered another x-ray and it came back showing the same spot.  We thought that it just hadn't had enough time to clear up, so we waited a week and then did it again.  The same spot was still showing, so we were referred to a pediatric pulmonologist at LeBonheur.  A couple of weeks after that, we went to our appointment with him.  He repeated the x-ray and the same spot was still there.  So he decided to do a bronchoscope.  They would put Selah under anesthesia and run a small scope into her lung to take a look.  He told us that a small portion of the lung could be collapsed, she could have a foreign body in her lung (said herhad recently found a peanut in the lung of a baby her age!), or it could be mucus, fluid, a tumor, basically any number of things.  So we were slightly worried, but Selah was not slowing down and seemed to feel great so that was encouraging.  Her bronchoscope was done today.  She did beautifully.  We had to wait for a long time and she couldn't have anything to eat or drink but she was so good.  Bless LeBonheur for having a playroom!  We played for several hours while awaiting her turn.  She had a good time.  I could tell she was hungry--she had a go at the plastic food in the toy kitchen, but that didn't work out so well for her.  Quite honestly, the longer we sat there, the more delicious that fake food started to look, so I totally understood.  She got so tired, she fell asleep in my arms.  (It was way past her normal naptime.)  So when they came to get her for her procedure, they let us walk her all the way to the OR.  The dr was already in the room and they let us come on in.  Brad laid Selah on the bed, being as how I was too short to reach it.  She stayed asleep and we were able to kiss her and then leave to let them do their work.  Most peaceful separation I have ever had with either of my children for their medical stuff! (One prior surgery for Selah, four surgeries for Korban plus two procedures he had to be sedated for.  Ugh.  Doesn't get easier with practice.) So we went to the waiting room.  Brad went to get us a drink.  We didn't want to eat or drink in front of her of course, so we hadn't had anything all day.  I had a pack of Jelly Bellies in my purse and I had literally shoved about half of those in my mouth when a nurse walked up to me and said "Alright, mom, come with me to the consultation room and the dr will be in shortly."  I thought he was going to have to scope me next because I almost aspirated my jellybeans!  Those waits are always so long, but I had practically just sat down.  So I was frantically texting Brad so he could come back.  He got there right before the doctor.  The dr said that he drew some mucous/fluid out of her lung and flushed it with saline to clear it out.  They will send it off to culture it for everything under the sun.  It will take 8 weeks to hear from that, but he felt sure that it wouldn't show anything alarming.  There were no foreign bodies, praise the Lord.  I was half-convinced she had one of the wheels of her brother's toy car in there or something.  I swear, when Korban was a baby, we didn't have anything that wasn't approved for the three and under crowd.  That's not so easy with your second child!  Her lung was not collapsed, there was no bleeding, and everything looked good.  We are SO thankful.  We got to go back to recovery as soon as she woke up.  She barely cried at all.  They had an ICEE machine (how cool is that?)  Selah perked up right away with the ICEE, ate all of that, and they let us come home.  She is coughing some, which they said was to be expected, but seems to feel well.  Thank You Jesus!  We are so grateful to all of our friends who were messaging us today to tell us they were praying.  Every time my phone beeped it was a reminder that someone cares enough about my family to lift us up to God, and that is an awesome feeling.

Now for the family devotion story.  We have recently started reading a Veggie Tales devotional book with our kids at night.  They both love Veggie Tales, and we thought it would be a good way to kick off family devotions.  Let me tell you, we weren't sure how much the kids were getting out of it, being as how they spent most of the time jumping up and down on the bed and/or trying to climb on Brad's head as he read to them.  But we plugged on.  Last night the devotion was talking about Moses and how his mother hid him in a basket in the river and trusted God with his safety.  Korban kept saying "in the desert."  Not sure how a river could be in the middle of the desert, but okaaaay.  Brad finished reading the story and then said we would pray.  He asked Korban to say a prayer for Selah and her doctors.  He told Korban that Selah had to go to the hospital so the dr could look at her lung and help her get well.  Korban asked if she would get a shot, and we told him yes, but that she would be asleep and wouldn't feel it. (They didn't put the IV in until she was asleep, so she really didn't feel it.)  Brad asked Korban if he remembered when our church prayed for Selah and anointed her with oil.  He told him that the dr might find that there's not even anything wrong, and that we were sure she was going to be just fine.  Then, knowing how I worry and thinking of the Bible story he had just read, he turned to me and said "We're just going to put Selah in a basket and trust God to take care of her."  I had about half a second to think about what a good analogy that was before Korban burst into tears.  Loud sobbing.  Tears squirting out of his eyes.  It took us by surprise so much that we just pretty much gawked at each other and him for a couple of seconds before we even moved to comfort him.  We had no idea what was wrong, if he was hurting, etc.  I was trying to hug him and ask him what was wrong.  "NO MORE PUT SELAH IN THE BASKET!" he bawled.  "NO MORE LEAVE SELAH IN THE DESERT!"  Yeah, that whole thing about autistic kids taking most everything literally, that's pretty much true.  Oops.  We were so relieved to find out what was wrong that we started to laugh.  We loved on him and assured him that we weren't actually putting Selah in a basket and we for sure weren't gonna leave her in the desert.  Selah seemed totally unconcerned about any impending threat from baskets, deserts, rivers, etc.  She just kept on jumping on the bed while we cuddled Korban and tried to make everything okay.  "It's okay," Brad told him.  "I was just using a metaphor.  Can you say metaphor?" he asked him.  " "METAPHOR!" Selah crowed as she bounced past.  Which made us laugh because, hello, she's 20 months and she can say metaphor.  Very cool.  The laughing spurred her on and she chirped "Metaphor, metaphor."  Yes, metaphors can be dangerous, as we found out.  But we convinced Korban that we weren't taking Selah anywhere to leave her and that she would be just fine.  And we said prayers and went to bed.  But hey, at least now we know that he plans on keeping her, right?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

In The Middle

Sometimes I think I would've been better suited for a middle child instead of an only child.  I say that because I kind of always feel like I'm in the middle.  Whatever group I happen to find myself in, I'm usually not at the top or the bottom, just somewhere in the middle.  I'm a pretty good peacemaker.  And I'm a terrible people-pleaser.  I say that because, while I want everyone to be happy with me all the time, I'm not always good at making that happen.  I try to juggle too many balls and invariably end up dropping some, if not all, of them.  (Yes, I do know you can't please everybody all of the time but that bit of wisdom doesn't stop me from trying and then feeling like a failure.  I don't know why.  I'm just mental that way.)  Sometimes I think I'm getting better about with this particular character flaw, and then it sucks me back in.  I feel pulled in too many directions, like a Stretch Armstrong doll about to snap.  It's like the very people that I want to make the happiest are the ones I let down the most.  The weird part is, I don't even think they feel as disappointed with me as much as I do with myself.  There are too many conflicts and I can't do this without letting one person down but if I go ahead and do it, I've let someone else down.  And I feel hugely responsible for other people, even though I maybe shouldn't.  I don't know how far personal responsibility goes; when I'm helping and when I'm making things worse.

Like my mom for example.  I love my mom.  We've always been close.  But sometimes you wouldn't know which one of us is the parent and which one of us in the child.  She's naive in many ways; childlike.  Sometimes I find it amusing and sometimes I find it annoying.  She's not extremely independent and I really wasn't raised to be either, although I think I have enough spunk in me to work around a lot of that.  My parents were extremely protective of me growing up.  I mean to the EXTREME!!!  People asked me what I had done to make my parents not trust me, and I would laugh and say nothing.  It was true.  They mostly trusted me, I think it was the rest of the world they were worried about.  And they had good reason to trust me.  I was sort of always a mini-adult.  I'm one of those people who follows the rules.  I return shopping carts to the designated place, I have a healthy respect for authority, and I don't even tear the tags off of pillows.  I wasn't allowed to make a lot of decisions for myself growing up, and I think I'm sort of making up for that now.  (They are just lucky I didn't go the other way and that's all I'm going to say about that.)

But it's weird now because I'm not even 30 yet, and I feel like I'm the one taking care of my mom.  I know that isn't necessarily true, she does a lot for me and my family.  But ever since my dad died I feel like I have to be strong for her.  That if I don't hold it together, everything will fall apart.  In a lot of ways, I feel like people viewed it as my mom losing her husband but not me losing my dad.  Again, this is only my perception of things, and I am smart enough to know that just because I perceive something a certain way doesn't make it reality.  I'm used to being an anxious sort of person, but when my dad died I had a two week old infant and an autistic three year old at home.  It was like I had so much to worry about that I couldn't possibly cover all of it, so my mind just sort of shut down.  All I could focus on was getting through whatever needed to be done and keep on moving.  My dad was like that, and I don't think he would've wanted me to just wallow in my grief.  And even if I had wanted to, I just don't see how that would've been possible.  But just because I was able to keep moving, do whatever I needed to do to get through the day, and do all of that for the most part without having a breakdown didn't mean I wasn't grieving.  The very implication of that made me mad.  The anxiety I was used to, the anger not so much.  The odd part is, it's not directed at anybody.  I'm not mad at my dad for dying, I'm not angry at God, I'm not mad at any of my family.  I just have this low level of irritability simmering below the surface that I never noticed so much before.  Brad (Mr. Mental Health) reminded me that anger is in fact one of the stages of grief.  He's right--I paid attention in those social work classes too.  I just didn't picture myself being the one getting stuck in that particular stage.  Maybe this is what I get for skipping right over the denial stage.  Who knows?  It just doesn't jive with my personality, and I'd be thankful to work through it and move on.

I feel like I've lost a lot more family that many people my age.  Not sure what the "average" is, but any kind of loss hurts.  All four of my grandparents are gone, and now my dad.  And my dad was a good bit older than my mom, and we had already lost all of daddy's siblings before him.  I have a couple of cousins left on my dad's side of the family, but I never see them.  Honestly, some of my distant relatives on his side of the family, I wouldn't recognize if I passed them on the street.  Nor would they me.  And that makes me sad.  My mom has an awesome family, very loving and supportive, but sometimes I feel like she gets upset if I try to spend too much time with them.  Like they are hers and not mine.  Which I definitely could be wrong, I have been known to read a little bit too much into situations.  But I have this horror of having no people left.  I worry about Brad.  I worry about my kids.  I don't want to be as overprotective of my kids as my parents were of me, but I still worry obsessively.  I want my kids to be able to learn and make mistakes and DO things without the constant fear of "what if?"  But my situation is different than my parents'.  I have a child who may or may not be able to make decisions for himself, may or may not be able to live independently when he is grown.  Of course, we pray and hope for the best but there's still that part of me that has to have a contingency plan.  What terrifies me the most is, you just get one chance.  How would you feel if you knew there was a very slim chance your child would actually listen to you?  If your child got away from you in public and was running towards a busy street and you were screaming bloody murder, would your child stop?  Mine wouldn't.  Therefore I hold on him so hard it probably hurts sometimes.  But that's better than the alternative.  The thing that takes my breath away is the worry that I'll miss something.  That one of them will be sick and I won't know it.  That I will be distracted for just a minute in a public place and Korban wanders into the path of a vehicle, or wanders off and gets lost, or gets taken.  I know I shouldn't obsess about it, but I don't know how to stop.  How would you feel if your child couldn't effectively communicate, couldn't ask for help in a crowd, couldn't stop when his mother told him too?  I know many kids are impulsive, I'm not saying it's just us.

Last night I dreamed that we were walking across a high bridge above some water.  One of my teenage cousins was carrying Selah and walking across the bridge ahead of us.  I was behind holding Korban's hand and walking across.  All of a sudden, my cousin just sat Selah on the bridge and walked away.  There were guard rails on the side, but she's so tiny I knew she could slip through them and into the water below.  I was screaming for her to come back and get Selah and frantically trying to decide whether to leave Korban and run to Selah or not.  I woke up after that.  Pulled in too many directions.  So afraid I'm going to let somebody down.  That I will neglect one child while caring for the other.  Of not having anybody left...

We are okay though.  I'm just stressing tonight, and thought it would be better to vent some of this rather than leaving it in.  So don't worry about us, but do pray!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Funny/Sweet Things That Korban Has Prayed For

I love to hear Korban say his bedtime prayers.  When he finally had enough words to pray, Brad and I would sort of guide him into what to say and he would repeat after us.  We didn't realize he would repeat verbatim (although we should've realized that!).  For example, we started out telling him "Bless your teachers," and he still to this day prays "Bless your teachers," every night.  Oh, those pronouns.  They get him (almost) every time.  But God knows what he means.  And I have to wonder if God gets as cracked up and as teary eyed as I do listening to him.  As he is gaining more speech, he is able to pray for what he wants and not just what we tell him.  He always likes for us to repeat whatever he has said back to him, and that is how he knows to move on to the next item on his list.  Otherwise, he just blesses the same person/thing over and over.  So here is a list of some of my favorites, although I'm sure more will come to mind later:

--Bless ketchup
--Bless Muck (from Bob the Builder, only Korban pronounces it "Meck")
--Bless Veggie Tales
--Bless bellybuttons (He's seriously obsessed with bellybuttons--more on that later. And sometimes he prays for specific people's bellybuttons.)
--Bless screaming  (He has a real issue with screaming that we have been trying to deal with for a loooong time now.  I have prayed extensively about this too, except my prayers usually sound something like "Dear God, please let it stop.")
--Bless time out.
--Bless Mommy/Daddy saying "go to your room."  (I think this may actually qualify as praying for those who persecute you.  Ha!)
--Bless little poke.  (His term for getting a shot or finger stick.  And I'm pretty sure in this case "bless" means "don't let that happen anymore.")
--Bless take off the Band-Aid  (This one was said after I put a Band-Aid on his foot and he wanted to take it off and I wouldn't let him.  He has a real sensory issue with Band-Aids.  I think he was trying to go over my head by praying on that one.)
--He also prays "Get well," which is probably due to how often he and his sister have been sick, so that one's sort of sad and sweet.
--For some friends who are struggling with infertility he would say "Pleeeeease bring them a baby!"
--One night he said "Bless Sue Song."  I just sat there dumbfounded, because I had no idea who Sue Song was.  Again he prayed "Bless Sue Song" while watching me out of the corner of his eye.  Seriously, all I could think of was Sue Storm from The Fantastic Four, and I knew we hadn't let him watch that.  When I still didn't repeat him or respond in any way he poked me in the shoulder, stuck his face in mine and practically shouted "BLESS SUE SONG, MOMMY!!!"  I then realized he meant our friend Suzanne, and I quickly said "Bless Suzanne!" and he was happy.

Oh, and he says "Bless your friends" just like he says "bless your teachers."  We really should've thought and used "my" when we taught him that, but it's still sweet.  He also blesses Mommy, Daddy, Selah, Nana, Mammaw, Grandpa, Uncle Clay, Aunt Kelly, Trevor and Haiden (his cousins)  most every night.  Sometimes he randomly throws in a family member or friend's name that we haven't even necessarily been seeing or talking about, so I have to wonder if he's not more perceptive and a better interceder than I am sometimes!  He always starts out with "Dear God" (or as he says it "De-ah God") and then he says his list and ends it with "Thank You Jesus, Amen."  Sweet boy.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Selah's Day At The Park With Her Pal Elmo

Selah waving hello
I think she's asking Nana to baby-sit Elmo.

Taking a rest
Going down the big slide
Ready, set, go!
Is it just me, or does Elmo look terrified?
She loves pushing Elmo in her stroller.
Going for a ride
Selah said "Dig, Elmo."

Personally, I always thought Elmo was a bit of a brown-noser...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Pics from Selah's Baby Dedication

Sweet Selah
Selah eating honeydew.  It kind of matches her dress.  Food AND fashion!
Korban chowing down on some watermelon at lunch
My Daddy's grave with the dedication flowers placed on it
Sittin' Pretty!
Selah in her post-dedication snooze
Selah with her Mommy, Daddy, Korban, Nana, Mammaw and Grandpa

Father's Day 2011

We had a good day today. The church service this morning was very special. It was Selah's baby dedication. She looked so beautiful in her little white gown and it was a blessing to be able to publicly promise to raise her in a Christian home. The pastor anointed her with oil and prayed over us. Our family stood with us also. It was very touching. We considered letting Korban stay seated with someone in the audience since we didn't know how he would handle being up in front of everybody, but we dismissed that notion very quickly. He's one of us, and we are proud of him and I don't ever want him to feel excluded. Our church has been very good to us and even asked if there was anything they could do to accommodate him. All in all he did really well. He did grab at a lady who was presenting us with flowers and a gift Bible for Selah, which I really hated, but other than that all was well. Selah was completely nonplussed by the extra attention and passed out asleep on her dad's shoulder as soon as we got back to our seats. Apparently being dedicated to the Lord can really wear you out!

After that, we went out to eat with our family and some sweet friends, and that was nice. My kids nearly cleaned out the fruit bar. It was funny. They especially enjoyed the watermelon. I wish my daddy could've seen all of that. I miss him so much! He was an excellent father. Very patient and loving. He was also intelligent and humble at the same time. And of course, very funny. I truly do miss him, but I can't complain too much. We had so many good memories while he was here on this Earth; more than a lot of people get in more years than we had together. So I choose to be grateful for that and keep on walking, keep on living, because I know that's what he would want. But it's always in the back of my mind that I wish he were here to enjoy it with us, especially on days like today. This evening we went to the cemetery and put the flowers from Selah's baby dedication on Daddy's grave. I thought that was a fitting way to honor his memory.  Honestly, I don't visit his grave too often.  He's just not there.  But I wanted to go today, so we did.

And then we came home and played outside until the fireflies came out. I hope Brad realizes how much he means to me and the kids, and that we did enough to celebrate him today. He truly is an awesome daddy to our little monkeys and I love him all the more for it. I hear a lot of sad stories about families dealing with autism in which the father can't or won't accept the diagnosis and the whole family suffers because of that. I'm thankful I've never had to deal with that. It's true, the parents of autistic children have a much higher divorce rate than families with healthy children. And given the stress level, I can honestly see why! But I feel like Brad and I are fighting against the autism and not each other, and that has made all the difference. Brad is strong and caring and fun to be with and he has talked me down out of the crazy tree more times than I could count. He's involved with our kids and there for them. Korban calls him " Dawee," because he can't quite say daddy. It's sweet. I think he's the best "Dawee " there is!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


So I am basically doing an experiment this summer. Kiddie movies are $2.00 at the Malco theater so I'm taking Selah in an attempt to teach her how to act in public. The first movie we saw was "How To Train Your Dragon," so I have named my experiment "How To Train Your Selah." We used this same method with Korban and he does pretty well in a theater now. My motto is let them practice while it's cheap. Plus the theater has good air conditioning and you can't beat that.

She loved the dragon movie, especially Toothless, the Night Fury dragon. She called him
"kitty." We saw Charlotte's Web today and she also liked it. Turns out she is very fond of pigs. These little movies are also good practice for me. I tend to load up like a pack mule and I'm also clumsy, so I consider this a training maneuver. We left the movie early today to go pick up Korban from his summer school class. When we stood up to go, I was balancing Selah, an overstuffed diaper bag, and my purse. Her snack bowl popped out and went rolling several aisles away from us but a nice man retrieved it for us.

Korban has therapy at The Autism Center of Tupelo on Mondays and Wednesdays, extended school year classes on Tuesday and Thursdays and occupational therapy on Fridays so we are busy. The comment has been made to me that we just need to "let him be a kid."That sort of stung. And my response to that was "He doesn't know how to be a kid. That's what we are trying to help him with." It's true. He's not like Rain Man or anything, but his idea of playing is trying to toss something into our ceiling fan. I'm serious. So part of his therapy is just learning how to play appropriately with toys. And I can't even put into words how happy it makes me to see him driving his little bulldozers and tractors. Seriously, the first time Brad and I saw him driving a car rather than just spinning the tires while humming, we let him stay up past his bedtime just because we didn't want to tell him to put the car up and go to bed. He does work very hard and we are careful to reward him for that and we try to do as much fun stuff as possible. So I think it sort of evens out. He is improving, even though that is easy to lose track of sometimes. I pray we are on the right track and not overdoing him or missing out on something he needs. But we are doing what we can, so I guess I just need to be at peace with that.

Monday, June 13, 2011

You Know You Are Living In The Crazy House When...

You glance up at the kitchen ceiling and notice that there is a glob of dried chocolate pudding up there.

There is a thunderstorm rapidly approaching and you are stuck outside waiting on your poor disabled dog to potty and his bathroom of choice just so happens to be a grove of pine trees.

You find yourself uttering phrases like "stop licking your sister's hair!"

Your son does business on the toilet and then hollers to his sister "See-ya, come nook at it.". (Selah, come look at it.)

Selah actually does go look at it.

You call someone on your cell phone and don't know why you can't hear them until you notice that,while the earbuds are plugged into your phone, they are not plugged into your ears.

Your mom starts every other sentence with "Dr. Oz says..."

Your daughter emerges from your bedroom wearing three of your bras around her neck like tropical leis.

Finding shoes that match has become such a problem that you have decided if the good ol' days were indeed simpler, it was because no one could afford shoes.

You wonder if all the people in the nudist colonies are there because they got tired of looking at mountains of laundry.

While in a public place, you discreetly point out another child to your husband and ask him "Is that the kid Korban's been hitting," and your husband says "I'm not sure. Walk Korban past him and see what happens."

Even though you realize that you and all the people you love are all very weird, you wouldn't trade this crazy, interesting life for the world.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Finally, a Picture!

Selah at the park
(BTW, I've only had this blog for about 8 months, and I finally figured out how to add pics.  Clearly, I'm a techological genius!)

Reasons Why I Hate Autism

 Because I am sitting in my van typing this when I should be in church. (After making a supreme effort to get ready, I would've liked to enjoy the service rather than have to take Korban out because he didn't last fifteen minutes. And more importantly, I need all of God that I can get right now.)

Because I can't have a conversation with my son and I would love to know what he is thinking.

Because everything is harder than it should be.

Because I am tired of wrestling.

Because I got the blood scratched out of my forehead before I even opened my eyes this morning.

Because I can't even sneeze without potentially causing a meltdown.

Because I can't afford it and I hate thinking that our son would be better if we had more money.

Because I miss being able to talk to my husband without setting off a round of ear-piercing screams.

Because of the ear-piercing screams period.

Because I am afraid Korban won't get better.

Because I am afraid it will steal Selah from me too.

Because I just realized this post sounds whiny and self-centered and I'd like to think I’m not that way.

Because if my mom read this she would feel the need to remind me that it could be worse and then I would feel guilty for writing all of that and I KNOW it could be worse and most of the time I think I do a pretty good job of being grateful for everything we are blessed with. But sheesh, a person needs to vent every now and then.

Okay, now I feel better....

The REAL Reason I Use Environmentally Friendly Products

I have recently made a real effort to use as many environmentally friendly household products as possible. (Meaning as many as I can afford.). I even have organic laundry detergent. Because I heart the environment. And I think it's important to be good stewards of all that God has given us. But the REAL reason I use those products is because for the most part they are nontoxic and I just never know when my kids are going to eat something. Case in point: this morning I found Korban using my deodorant for chapstick. Thank you Tom's of Maine for your yummy (perhaps a little too yummy) apricot deodorant and the fact that it did not give me a reason to call Poison Control.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Little Bits of Funnyness

Actual conversation in the Essary household yesterday
Korban: (sitting at the kitchen table eating blueberries)  "Blueberries fruit.  Good fruit."
Me:  "Yup, blueberries are fruit.  They're good for you!  I'm glad you like them."
Korban:  Peaches fruit?
Me:  "Yup, peaches are fruit."
Korban:  Plums fruit?"
Me:  "Plums are fruit."
Korban:  "Pecan fruit?"
Me:  "Nope, pecans are nuts."
Brad:  "I think they could be called a fruit."
Me:  "No they can't.  They're nuts."
Brad:  "But aren't nuts a fruit?"
Me:  "YOU'RE a nut!"
Korban:  "Nerds fruit?"
Me:  (laughing)  "Nerds aren't fruit.  Nerds are junk!"
Korban:  (confused) "Nerds junk?!?" (dismissively) "Nerds fruit!"

Brad and I were talking about airplanes the other day.  Korban is really liking airplanes and helicopters these days, and I've never been on an airplane.  Brad has flown before, to Russia and back, so obviously it doesn't bother him.  The thought of getting on a plane makes me start to hyperventilate.  Brad said "You know if we got an opportunity to go somewhere and needed to fly, you could do it.  Korban would love it, and you would do it for him."  (He's right, but I wasn't ready to admit that.)  So I asked Korban.  I said "Hey, buddy, if we were going to take a trip to somewhere far away, would you rather ride in our van or fly on an airplane?"  His eyes slid sideways as he gave this some serious consideration.  I waited while holding my breath.  He turned back to me and said "Hot air balloon."  Mercy.  They'll have to knock me like Mr. T and that's all I'm going to say about that.

We visited the Natural Science Museum in Jackson the other day.  Selah was standing with her nose pressed up against a huge aquarium filled with giant gar.  While she was standing there looking, one of the gar flattened itself against the glass and swam straight down, right over the spot Selah was standing.  She obviously thought the fish had her.  She ducked, covered her head with her arms and said "Oh no!"  Cuteness.  She was wary of those fish the rest of the time we were there.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Writing On The Wall

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Korban goes to The Autism Center of Tupelo twice a week for classes.  We are looking at him going Monday-Friday this summer.  Right now he goes every Tuesday/Thursday from 8:00-11:30.  He started off going for one on one instruction for two hours, and then they moved his hours up when they started a small class.  I got a call from the center director day before yesterday.  She said that she had met with the teachers, and they had decided that Korban is not doing well with the extended hours.  She said that he is not so much a behavioral problem, as they just can't get past his sensory seeking stims to actually teach him things. (For those of you not familiar with the world of autism, stim is shorthand for "self-stimulatory behavior."  Basically people with autism don't have the same sensory perceptions as other people.  They might be super sensitive to noise, light, etc. or they might constantly crave sensory input, causing them to do things like rock, flap their hands, make noises, play with objects in strange ways, and on and on.  Korban sort of vacillates between the two extremes.)  So all of that was getting in the way of his instruction time and they felt like the extended class time was overstimulating for him.  The plan of action they decided on was to cut his time back to two hour sessions and have him come three days a week instead of two.  They were planning on getting an occupational therapy consult for some ideas on handling his sensory problems.  And they intend on building him back up to three and a half hours days.  So they had a game plan, and I really appreciated the thought they had put into it.  But part of me was really bummed about this.  If he can't even handle a three and a half hour session with a couple of other kids and multiple highly trained professionals, how is he going to navigate a kindergarten classroom?  It has always been our hope that he would be able to be mainstreamed, and that deflated my hopes a good bit.  I know he is struggling right now, though.  And I don't know what to do to help.  I talked this over with Brad when he got home from work and he said "You just agreed to bring him three days a week instead of two right away?  What about school?"  (And why didn't I talk to him about it before agreeing.)  Korban's been in a great school for two years now.  It's a special needs classroom in the public school system of an adjacent county.  Our county doesn't have a special needs preschool program.  So I don't want to feel like I'm giving up on his regular school.  But the Autism Center is our plan for the summer, and if I let go of it now, we will go back on the loooong waiting list and our chance of getting him services there will probably slip away.  His school is about 40 minutes from our house.  The Autistm Center is at least an hour.  So we will be spending more money on gas, food, etc. to go down there for therapy three times weekly and then turn around and come back home.  Not to mention I already worry that Selah is spending half her life in a carseat.  But we don't have a lot of options and they really are pretty awesome and no one else around here does the type of therapy they do.

My mom rode with us to Tupelo today, and sat in the van with Selah while I took Korban in for class and also when I went back to pick him up.  I talked with the director briefly in the hall.  She said that they had done some different exercises with Korban that seemed to be helpful.  His teacher said he was getting a little out of sorts towards the end of class, but nothing too major.  I mentioned that I don't understand why sometimes he can be calm and cheerful for an extended period of time and then all of a sudden he swings the other day with out of control behavior, obsessive stimming, etc.  I commented that every time it happens I try to find some cause:  Is he sick?  Tired?  Some sort of change in his routine?  Eating something that doesn't agree with him?  And I can never find anything to attribute it to.  She said that it isn't anything specifically causing it, it's just his system.  In short, some days he feels better than others and there's not a specific cause.  So that makes sense to me, I think.  She also said that kids with sensory problems tend to have systems that regulate somewhat as they get older.  That gives me hope, at least.

We got in the van and headed toward home, and I shared all of that with my mom.  I told her that I'm just never completely sure of how to handle Korban's autism.  More therapy?  More school?  Less therapy?  Less school?  Give it all up completely and spend our money touring the country's aquariums because that really makes him happy?  I just don't know.  I mean, he has two reasonably intelligent parents who are over the moon for him, and have sought out any means of services that we thought would be beneficial to him.  So why is he not better?  I don't mean to sound ungrateful--he has improved in SO many ways and I guess when you come so far sometimes you sort of forget where you've been.  It's just that I thought we would've come further by now.  And I don't fully understand why we haven't.  I'm not looking for a quick fix.  I just wish I could have a real conversation with my son and that he could handle a few hours in a structured setting without losing his mind.

I told my mom to pray for me and Brad to have wisdom.  That we are trying so hard, but we thought we would be better at this or something.  I told her that every time we are faced with a choice regarding Korban's treatment, it seems like we can think of ten reasons why we should do it and ten reasons why we shouldn't.  I never have 100% peace about anything and that's wearing on me.  I even quoted the Bible verse to her that says God gives wisdom generously to all who ask, without finding fault.  And that I keep asking, but I don't feel a whole lot wiser.  About that time, I decided to pull my Blackberry out of my purse to check for messages.  I'm forever forgetting to lock the keypad, so it always has several letters scattered across the screen.  I glanced down and was surprised to find the face of my phone read "U yap."

Who says God doesn't have a sense of humor?

More listening, less talking...

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Random Bits and Pieces

So Korban randomly said to me tonight "I do not have any mustache."  Ummmm, no bud, you don't.  Which is okay, because it would really set you apart from the rest of the preschool set.  Wow.  He saw an episode of Sesame Street a long time ago, and the word of the day was "mustache," and he's been a little obsessed with them since.  Mainly pointing them out on other people and such.  I didn't think he actually wanted to grow one, but maybe I read him wrong.  At any rate, he pronounces it a lot better than he used to.  He used to say it "moo-natch."  Once we spent an entire family get-together with Brad's family with Korban pointing at Brad's hairy-faced uncle and repeatedly shouting "Moo-natch!"  No one had any idea what he was saying.  It was actually sort of funny.  Thank you Sesame Street.

Speaking of tv shows, I don't watch a lot of tv other than the aforementioned Sesame Street and Bob the Builder.  Actually I mainly just listen to Bob, because that is what Korban usually watches when we are travelling and I can't see the screen, of course.  We only had one Bob the Builder DVD, and Korban fell in love with it.  I remedied that by purchasing several more at the last consignment sale I shopped.  I was pretty excited to have some new listening material, seeing as how we spend a lot of time in our van and I pretty much had that first one memorized.  I even found one DVD that was something about Bob playing with his friends, and I was hoping it would help Korban somehow with his social skills since that area is such a struggle for us.  I realize that's a pretty tall order for poor ol' Bob, but he has caused peace to fall in the van on long road trips in a way that was not previously possible, so what can I say?  I heart Bob.  So I excitedly popped that DVD in for Korban to watch and immediately thought "Huh?"  The outer package was all in English but the characters were speaking Spanish.  I'm not sure why, but it struck me as really funny and I had a good laugh.  I wrote it off as the best three dollars I ever wasted.  A few days later I played it for Brad.  After he got finished laughing, he said "First of all, that's French, not Spanish."  (Sure enough, on the "Yes we can!" part of the theme song, they were saying "Oui" not "Si," so kudos to Brad for figuring that out.)  The second thing he did was change the language setting to English, thereby rendering it understandable to us.  (And that's why I married him.)  I didn't know Bob was bilingual.  That building dude is full of surprises.  Since we love him so much, we've decided to have a Bob the Builder themed birthday party for Korban next month.  He really loves birthdays, and last years party was SO much fun, so I'm hoping this year is just as good.  We'll keep you posted.

Going back to tv, if it wasn't for the DVR I might never get to watch anything that didn't involve Muppets or talking bulldozers.  My only challenge is staying awake long enough to watch anything when I finally get to sit down at night.  We have a big backlog of shows that we watch, but that's good I guess. Gives us some entertainment to look forward to, and I'm not worried that I'm wasting my life away in front of the television.  Which is a big deal, considering all the quality television shows you've got out there:  Billy the Exterminator, Hoarders, Animal Hoarders, I'm Pregnant and a Hoarder, I'm Pregnant and a Nudist, etc.  Okay, I'll admit to actually watching Billy the Exterminator a couple of times.  And a little bit of Hoarders.  Actually Brad watches Billy sometimes, and Korban passed through once and developed an unhealthy (in my eyes) interest in it.  So when he starts picking up snakes and cussin' ya'll just direct your comments to his daddy, okay?  Just saying...  And my friend Cindy loves Hoarders.  She's always calling and telling me when it comes on and wanting me to watch it.  I really should, because it would probably get me all pumped about cleaning and throwing stuff out, but I just don't have time.  Oh, and Cindy and I did once discuss that if you happened to be a Pregnant Nudist Hoarder, you could hide behind all your piles of stuff.  Not that a nudist would want to hide.  She and I have some strange conversations...

One show I LOVE is Burn Notice, on USA.  We were really late getting to watch this last season, and only finished the season finale a few weeks ago.  It was awesome.  I know James and Suzanne will know what I'm talking about when I tell this story, and if you don't watch this show, you might want to check it out.  I made Brad save the finale on the DVR so I could go back and watch parts of it again.  It was just that good.  I normally never watch things like that when Korban is awake, but he was actively involved in playing with something in his room, and I didn't think he would notice, so I turned it on.  I mainly wanted to see Fiona jump down in the foxhole with Michael because that was just so stinkin' cool.  So I turned it on and was watching the part leading up to that.  Michael is already is his little foxhole and Jesse and Fiona are discussing their plan of action.  She tells him she needs to be with Michael, and he tries to talk her out of it, knowing how risky it will be.  She says she has to be with Michael, kisses Jesse on the lips, and turns and runs down the hallway, presumably to die alongside Michael.  Korban had slipped up beside me unnoticed and was watching this with growing concern--it was an intense scene.  When Fiona kisses Jesse and leaves, Korban said to the tv screen "Mommy WILL come back and get you."  I laughed so hard I couldn't breathe.  He had no idea why.  I turned the tv off and went on about our business, but I will never see that scene without laughing about that.  As a side note, Korban used to have some pretty major separation anxiety but now that is how he reassures himself when I drop him off at school, or the Autism Center.  He hugs me bye and then tell himself "Mommy will come back and get you."  Sweet, huh?

Selah is feeling better.  I took her back to the doctor for a re-check today and she hasn't developed any secondary infections or anything, so that is great.  She hasn't slept well at all the past two nights, so I was sort of worried about her.  She may just be teething though.  The doctor explained that the flu kind of wipes your system out and can make you vulnerable to things for several weeks. He told me "Don't let your guard down," and that made me smile.  I'm paranoid, bordering of freakishly so, when it comes to my kids.  When does my guard EVER go down?  But I guess there are worse ways to be.

Selah's been her usual busy self the past few days, so she must be feeling pretty well.  I turn my back for a second, she's on top of the kitchen table.  Or any other surface she shouldn't be scaling.  Her answer for most everything these days is "Noooo."  Her verbal ability amazes me though.  She is attempting to put some words together.  She has been saying "Get it," which is used almost as must as "No."  And she's been working on "I love you."  It comes out more like "Ah woo woo," but very sweet nevertheless.  I was about to put Korban to bed the other night, and Brad was going to lay Selah down, and we were all telling each other good night.  I told Selah I loved her and she actually responded "I love you," or as she says "Ah woo woo."  I was amazed and kept telling her I loved her so she would say it back to me.  She showed off several more times and then apparently got tired of it because I said "I love you!" and she replied "No."  That girl!

Well, I am off to other things.  Hope we get some sleep tonight!

Thursday, March 24, 2011


After me calling, pleading, fussing, and waiting for six weeks, Mr. Internet Man showed up unexpectedly to fix our satellite internet yesterday.  I didn't know whether to hug him or take a swing at him.  Just kidding.  I know it wasn't his fault, totally, so I was very happy to see him.  After re-setting our satellite in concrete this time (because apparently sandy soil WILL shift--not exactly brand-new information) we were good to go.  Hope it lasts!

So today did NOT work out like we had planned.  We've been wanting to take Korban to the Memphis Zoo for a long time, and now Selah is old enough to enjoy it too.  The weather forecast was glorious, and Brad had some comp time he needed to use before it expired so he took off and we planned to head out for Memphis.  Selah got up yesterday sneezing with a runny nose, but it didn't seem too serious.  I gave her some Zyrtec her doctor had prescribed for her before we went to bed last night and assumed she would be good to go.  She woke up during the night crying and when I picked her up, I noticed she was hot.  Brad went and got the thermometer and her temp was 101.4.  Not good.  I undressed her and stayed up for a while with her until her fever went down.  She was alert and playful, so I still didn't think it was anything too major.  When we got up this morning, Brad took Selah to the doctor.  He actually needed refills on his asthma meds and he is in the midst of a big asthma flare-up, so they both went to his doctor.  Selah tested positive for Flu A.  Yucko.  I honestly wasn't even worried about her having the flu.  I was hoping we were past flu season, but apparently not.  Korban is okay so far, but I am eyeing him suspiciously and worrying.  Again, yuck.  Worrying about being sick is almost as bad as actually being sick.  My mom did come and get Korban, but he has already been exposed to Selah and he doesn't stay the night away from us, so I guess we will just watch him closely.  I feel fine.  Hope that continues, since I don't do sick very well.  Korban was a little disappointed about not going to see the "ammals" today, but he handled it well.  I didn't even tell him we were going to the zoo until last night before bed, and now I wish I hadn't told him at all.  But maybe we can go soon.  Selah usually bounces back from things pretty well, and I'm praying this is no different.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Falling Off the Face of the Earth

I've been a bad blogger.  I thought I would be better than this.  After Christmas, I typed a really long entry about our holiday events, and promptly lost it before I could post it.  Shortly after that we lost Internet service and the local satellite people aren't at all interested in coming to fix it, so I've fallen off the face of the Earth. :(

I'm hiding in my in-laws computer room to type this, so I'll be brief.  We are doing pretty well.  Korban's immune system is still low but we are not doing the immunoglobulin infusions just yet.  He goes to his regular school three days a week and on Tuesday and Thursday I take him to the Autism Center of Tupelo for classes from 8:00 until 11:30.  This summer we are looking at going five days a week.  The cost for the full week will be $150.00 and we aren't sure how that is going to happen.  There was a mention of scholarships becoming available, so please pray that we qualify for one of those.  There's also the issue of traveling so much, so while you are praying, please pray for safety and that I am able to keep up everything I need to do otherwise.

Selah is doing very well.  She has learned to run and loves to show off.  She has been an excellent climber since before she could walk, so she keeps me on my toes all the time.  She's such a good climber sometimes I feel like I had a baby with Spiderman.  Maybe Brad is a superhero in his spare time.  ;)  She is saying quite a few words and understands a whole lot more, so that is cool.

Both kids are really loving the pretty spring weather and we have been outside SO much.  Korban reminds me to put on 'sunscreem" before we head out, but even with that Korban still has a red neck.  Literally.  They play all sorts of different things outside.  Let's just say if Bubble Mowers actually cut the grass, we would never have to worry about the lawn.  I could probably hire Korban out for other people too.  Selah wants to sit on the mower and let him push her, but he's not crazy about that.  He dumps her off and moves on, and she chases after him.  I bet we've logged 1000 miles behind that Bubble Mower.  Selah has discovered the Little Tikes playhouse in the backyard, and now I think she is mad at us for making her live in a real house for the past 15 months.  Korban loves to swing, and Selah likes the slides.  Gives her a chance to show off her climbing ability I guess. 

I just wanted to do a quick update in case anybody was wondering what happened to us. 
We are chugging along and I really hope to have our Internet issue fixed sometime this year.  I'll leave you guys with a couple of "Korbanisms."  My friend Suzanne coined that term for funny things he says, and I love it.

--Yesterday he was begging me to take him outside, and I hadn't even had a chance to take off my church clothes yet.  I told him to give me a minute and he said (in his serious tone) "Five more minutes."  (I generally give him a five minute warning before we head inside so he got that one from me.)

--He was eating popcorn the other day, and he held up a popcorn kernel and asked what it was.  I told him it was a popcorn kernel and he got a confused look on his face and asked "Colonel Rebel?"  I'll give his daddy credit for that one. 

--This one is just sweet.  He loves to see butterflies outside and when he sees them he says "Thank you Jesus butterflies."  He also says "Thank you Jesus pretty wedder."  (That's weather, in case you don't speak Korban.)