Sunday, October 25, 2009

A fun weekend and a glitch

...but no pictures to share of it, at the moment. I am waiting for them to download and will not be awake before they do. So Friday we had a bonfire. Those are always fun and always accompanied by s'mores. We had a friend staying the weekend, so he got to share in the fun. Saturday was soccer. But it was also our glitch day, which I'll get to in a moment. Saturday evening we just vegged and tried to prepare for Sunday. Sunday after church we had a birthday party to go to. It was held at a farm nearby that has a lot of other attractions. It was so much fun. We got to go on a train ride, a hay ride, slide down an 80 foot slide, go in a hay jump and a corn play room. The kids had a blast. They also got to take home a pumpkin. We were surprised to have to shoo off yellow jackets as it was quite chilly. Jeremiah single handedly killed at least 8 of them, at last count! Poor Jed was in one of his 'sensitive states' and was really freaking out about the bees. It is possible with some other things that have been going on with Jed that his remedies have been antidoted. Can anyone say 'roller coaster ride'? Jed over all has been doing well, but we've hit a wall in his sensory issues and that can be stressful on everyone.

So about that glitch.....Saturday morning I am getting everyone ready for soccer. The last thing for me to do is get Jed's feeding pump ready to go. So I got the pump in the backpack, filled the bag with formula and I turned it on so that I could prime it, which is the last step. But what's this? Where is the bouncing kangaroo, the flash of green, yellow and red lights, the triple beep? Surely I must not have hit the power button hard enough, so I re-hit it....nope, no beeps, no kangaroo, nothing. I was pretty positive that when I went to get his pump that I had to unplug it from being recharged. But to make sure I went and got the plug to plug in the unit to see if maybe the battery hadn't recharged. I go to plug the adapter into the back of the unit, but something funny was going on with the plug, it was all wobbly. I take a look to find that there is a piece missing from the unit and now the plug adapter won't sit firm to stay in contact with the unit to recharge! So later on Jeremiah rigs something up to get it to stay in there, but alas we now get the unit to turn on but with an error that won't let us proceed and it makes the machine power down! In case that was all gibberish to you, as I know I don't always make sense, in plain English: Jed's feeding pump is busted!!! Let me just say that this is NOT good!! With a capital N, capital O and a capital T. NOT good. We are still able to give him his feedings by doing bolus feeds. The good news is that as long as we take our time, he is keeping them down (a problem in the past). The bad news is that it takes me being *right* there to manage it.

Now the game begins to see how this will get resolved. His home health service says we have to contact the manufacturer to see about the machine's warranty. I can only imagine the possible go around we may have. So I am earnestly praying that this is resolved quickly, in a God way. Because I truly believe it is going to have to be a 'God thing' for this to get taken care of in a quick fashion. As it is it is past midnight and I am up because I have to give Jed his feeding bit by bit so as not to overwhelm his stomach.

We are also in prayer concerning his speech therapy. I have sent in the paper work some two weeks ago and we are still awaiting a call or letter that will tell us the next step. We really need to get Jed set up with therapy soon.

A praise though, we have found multiple sources for goats milk for the winter!! Our friend who supplies us with goat's milk for Jed has her goats dried up. Last year we had to buy pasteurized goats milk from the store, and even had to buy powdered milk (which did a number on his pump!). I was praying that we wouldn't have the same problems this year. And praise the Lord He has provided a couple of families willing to give us their goats milk, as they have not dried up their goats. Yeah!!!

So lots going on. I can't wait to show you the cute pictures we got of our farm outing. We were also able to obtain another memory card so that I can make those videos. It wasn't our camera that was messed up, just the memory card. Which is a relief. Memory cards are MUCH cheaper than cameras! :-) We will be borrowing this card until we can get our own. I am so thankful! Now I can show you all how Jed talks.

I need to finish up here and give Jed the last bit of his feeding so I can go to bed myself. I do have another interesting story to tell you all, but I will save it for later as I am too tired to type it out. It has to do with Isabella and a tummy bug. Very interesting indeed!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Banging head against wall

Ok, well, I thought the camera was fixed! It really and truly was. But somewhere between when Jeremiah fixed it the other day and today it no longer works!!!! It may have something to do with the children taking pictures with it. I am sure they are pushing a button that shouldn't be pushed or something. Jeremiah is off with two of the girls at soccer, so I will ask him to take a look at it when he gets back. I had no less than 300+ pictures to delete.... all of dogs! Oh, wait and a few of the girls trying to catch a picture of another girl in mid air (while jumping off the couch). I'm thinking a camera for Christmas is in order for them!

We had a pleasant day today. We got outside for some fresh air and a lot of dirt....a lot of dirt. So two muddy boys and two muddy girls got baths when we came in. I got a lot of my schedule stuff done, but still not finished. It was nice that when it was clean up time a few of the girls were pleasantly surprised when there wasn't much to clean! Yes, that is how it goes if you actually put things away right after you use them, and you keep little boys out of things :-)

Off to do more laminating :-)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Hair cuttings

I think I may have mentioned this, but we finally got the camera's video mode working! It may be another day or two before I can get around to videoing the things I had in mind. Right now I feel like I am coming down with something. I would take the colloidal silver, but if this ends up being a wee cold, I don't want to 'waste' it. We still have a ways before winter even hits over here and I want to save the good stuff for when it counts :-)

Due to the baby being ill and just our busy weekends the house was a bit untidy today. I spent most of the morning typing up various schedules and cleaning routines. Most of them were just revisions of previous routines. It would be really great if ONE routine would work forever and ever! But, depending on the season, depending on whether there is a newborn in the house, depending on whether there is a tornado of a toddler in the house, depending......well you get the idea, things CHANGE around here and so must I to accommodate the changes. I printed everything up, now I need to cut some things out, and laminate....I'm a laminating junkie....Hi, my name is Kerri, and I'm a laminating junkie. I can't let papers just be papers, they must be encased in a smooth glossy finish....HA!!! Ok, enough joking. I am hoping to get those routines all finished up. I still have a long list of other printables that I need to do. I want to put the girls school work assignments on a spreadsheet to keep better track of their work. I have been looking into PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) for Jed. But from what I have read a lot of children do better with 'real' pictures instead of symbols or cartoonish pictures. So I want to start putting together some pictures of our actual stuff for that project. I am pleased we are seeing progress with the fish oils, but we still will have a long road ahead of us. I am also very pleased that he knows a lot of signs and we will continue to learn more. However, he is getting older and not everyone knows sign language. I know that 99.5% of the time he will be with Jeremiah, myself or one of his sisters, who all know his signs. But I would like him to be able to communicate without an interpreter as well. So I am hoping to incorporate the pictures so that he can also "talk" to other people. This will be a big project.

I have some other projects as well that are in progress, such as typing in all my recipes into Word. I went through them to weed out the ones I really don't use, or will never get around to trying. Then the oldest two girls and I have been spending time, here and there, typing them into the computer. That will help with a lot of paper clutter in the long run.

So, today after all my work on the routines, we did school, and a bunch of tidying up. However this house can get in untidy mode faster than you can say, "tidy"!!! I had baked up a bunch of potatoes, some that were used for tonight's dinner and some that will be used for a dinner later this week. And as they were baking Moira had come in from playing outside. She has hair just like mine. It was down to her lower back and it was a rat's nest!!! I told her to brush it and it took her a good long while to get it all decent. I knew it was long past time to get her hair cut. It is so pretty long, but oooohhhhh so hard to upkeep! So I asked her if she wanted me to cut it. She said yes! Oh, scary!! :-) Ha! Well I have to say it actually looks really great now! I parted her bangs (which are about the same length as the rest of her hair now) off to the side and the hair cut looks really charming on her! It's just a long bob, but it really suits her. Flannery wanted her hair done as well, and hers came out really cute too. Her bangs are really long, and a bit wavy, so I wasn't sure what to do with them. She didn't want me to cut them, so I let them be. I know that their shorter hair will be much easier to care for. Isabella really, really wants her hair cut shorter as well. However that girl has thick, THICK hair! I dare not touch it! She really needs to get it thinned, so we will be having someone else cut it for us. I am not kidding when I say I call her a water dog as water just beads off her hair! Washing it is really hard to do. With it being so long it has been just about impossible for her to wash it properly. I've done it and it really took a lot of effort! So snip, snip and thin, thin coming shortly for her.

Well it is late, I need to tidy up a few things before getting Jed's feeding ready. The rest of our week will be trying to keep on track and tackling some of these projects. Not to mention we are supposed to have some really nice weather that we need to get out and take advantage of.

Flannery's hair awaiting the scissors! Her hair has been difficult as it is wavy. Even her bangs have some wave in them, which always gives the appearance of it being unkept. The last time I cut her hair I put layers into it which really helped. So I was a bit nervous that she wanted a bob like Moira.

A side view of her lenghth.

Now the finished product :-) Her hair really was even when wet, but here it had some time to dry and it looks uneven....again the wave action. But she is very happy with it, and I think it turned out great.

I parted her hair to the side, which I think helps. Her hair is still only half dry at this point. It looks great this morning all dried.

Here is Moira's new look. I don't have a before shot, but I am sure there are plenty of pics in previous posts to know that her hair was LONG.

A side view. I think I snapped it at an odd moment...oops.

And the back. Her hair was all the way down to her lower back. I think I cut at least 8 or so inches off!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

lot of pictures!

I am really not happy with Blogger lately. I'm not sure if there is some upgrade that I know nothing about. I posted my before and after pictures of my haircut, however it won't let me rearrange my pictures, so the after picture is first! Oh, well. I also had a ton of other pictures to share and decided to put them in a montage. Before the montage I give you a run down of what you will be seeing :-)

"It" happened, just like I thought it would. That "it" being sickness! So I got the house all done (with the exception of a box of game pieces that need to find their rightful home). I happened to get it all finished about 5 minutes before we were leaving for our camping trip. When we came home I had the girls help me bring EVERYTHING back inside from the van. I was pretty sure we brought everything but the kitchen sink. I was wrong, we left the kitchen sink and the wasp spray at home! Our camping trip will need a post of it's own. Anyways, this was a Sunday and the girls reminded me (in hopes of getting out of this huge task) that it was the Sabbath and how we shouldn't be working on it! Well, yes, that would be the general rule, however you can't leave wet things in a van, or food in there as well. And by golly I knew they would head out to the van to "get one thing" and I would find myself knee deep in "one things" before the day was out. So we got it all out of the van, into the house, and I had them immediately put it all away. So far so good I thought! Monday came and Jeremiah was home from work, his last day of vacation. I tried to wrap my brain around making up a plan to keep the house running smoothly, we went shopping, did school and the like. There was no hint of anyone being sick. We went to bed, only for me to be awakened at 3 AM to a toddler who was burning up! Now usually when my kids are sick their fevers wane come morning, and then build back up by evening. Not to mention that besides some fussiness, and some extra sleeping, they pretty much go about life as normal. Well this little guy was sick! His fever ran strong, night and day, even with meds. He was either nursing, trying to sleep, or crying! He had maybe 30 minutes of "play time" all day for the first two days. His play time consisted of him getting down grabbing an object, then crawling back into my arms to continue his fussing or nursing. But the thing that really settled it in my mind that he was really sick....he wouldn't eat solid foods! This is Jonah we are talking about! This is my meat and potatoes kid, this is my 'everything in life is good now that I have some food' type of kid. He didn't want to eat. Now that's bad. So I was able to get in to see our alternative practitioner. Her testing revealed that he has the swine flu *gasp*. I'm joking about the gasp part :-) She gave me a remedy for all of us should we fall ill this winter. I was to give him a dose every hour. Well by that night my boy was eating, and running and laughing! Don't get me wrong, he's still sick, but much, much improved! He woke up with a fever of maybe 99. His eyes were red, but now only one is pink. The only thing is he's still really fussy. But he is down and playing with toys and walking around. So I will continue giving him the remedy every hour today and hopefully by tomorrow he'll be more like himself.

Because he's still fussy I will need to get off of here. Here are my 'after' and 'before' pictures. Nothing drastic, but it's a nice change:

This is a self portrait as everyone bigger person was out of the house at the moment :-)

The long layers that you see in the 'after' picture are how long my hair is. I didn't get a back view, but I think you can see just how much was taken off.

And here is my explanation of some of the pictures you will be seeing, it is in order, but not every picture is taken into account. Hopefully it is evident when you see the montage.


*decluttering the computer room-before-well actually I should say "during"

*decluttering "after"

*our first egg!! (from one of our own chickens)

*an egg comparison-on the left a store bought egg, on the right, ours. Notice the color difference. Our egg yolks are actually orange. The darker color means more nutrients. So our we are feeding are chickens right :-)

*soccer girls-each girl in the soccer garb on the field

*tent practice-the girls slept out in a tent on our porch

*outside play time--our own petting zoo, tent building

*our museum adventure-notice Flannery jumping from a rock!

*our camping trip-unfortunately those are the only pictures I got! Ugh.

*last picture is for comic relief-make sure to look in the blue bin!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Jed's Apraxia

I am trying to get some videos uploaded about Jed's apraxia. I also did a house tour....finally. But yet again something happened and the video didn't upload to the computer properly. Unfortunately with the other videos I was trying to do I erased it off the camera. That means I need to do another one! I'm not sure when that will be coming. Poor little babe has a fever and was up a lot last night. He may have an ear infection, but not sure at this point.

Anyways, I have been doing a lot of research on apraxia lately. Jedidiah has not been doing well in speech. He had actually "lost" words that he used to say. From my reading I found that is common with apraxia. I've been trying to make a lot of books/games for Jed to encourage him to speak. I went on YouTube to look up apraxia to see how other kids talk. We haven't met anyone in person with it so it is hard to gauge how good/bad Jed has apraxia. His speech therapist told us he was bad. After all on the testing she did all of Jed's scores were at the 2 percentile or less! But still, those were just numbers and without some idea of what that meant in the real world it was hard to process. Well we came away from those videos a bit dismayed. Jed really is bad! So I started reading as much as I could to see what I can be doing here at home (besides what I was already doing). I have read that there has been some good success with fish oil supplements with children who have apraxia. We had been giving him some in the past and we didn't see any changes. However on one site that I was reading they said that some kids need only 1ml per day but other kids may need 10mls per day! So I increased the amount we had been giving him. I'm not sure if its coincidence, or the fish oils, but last night Jed had a speech explosion! I need to get a video of him talking so that we will have a reference to compare to over the coming months. But last night he said three new 'words'. He said, "yes", "down" and "moo". Now each of them was not said properly, but they were close. Besides the word "up" Jed doesn't put any consonant endings on his words. But he said the /s/ sound in "yes" last night! For "moo" it sounded more like maaaaaaa. But he has only ever said "mmmmmmm" for the sound of a cow, so this is an improvement. And for the word "down" he said it more like "don". But Jed hasn't even been trying to say words for the past couple of months so this was very exciting!

Hopefully I'll get him to talk on video today. I am hoping to redo the house tour as well. Each video takes forever and a day to upload to YouTube though, so it may be a day or two before I get them on my blog. I am also hoping to update my tags to make things easier to keep track of. I want to start a tag for apraxia, and a tag for homeschooling resources. I've come across some neat sites that I have been getting a lot of ideas from that I want to pass along to everyone. Now that I have my house done I need to work on my next task, which is getting us organized with routines/schedules. It would be so nice if, when you saw a system you liked, you could just implement it and it would work! Ha! But as you will see in my house tour I point out a long the way what is working for us, and what I've learned after trying to make it work, what doesn't work for us and how I need (or think I need) to change it. It is definitely a process in work.

Until the next time, have a wonderful day.
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