Being Bullied!

 Bei and Dan's relationship has really grown and deepened in the past year.  They definitely are buddies.

When Bei did his first homework assignment, I thought "uh oh...he hasn't lost his Chinese because surely that was not English that he was trying to write."    It is amazing how improved his work has become in such a short amount of time.

It is not Bei getting Bullied at his school, BUT me!   Let me tell you about the first encounter.   This was during the time that Kai had been really sick for two weeks.   It didn't matter that Kai is covered in hives, is sicker than a dog, I still have to schlepp him along with me to and from Bei's school.   Anyway, there is a bench that the 1/2 day mom's sit on outside Bei's classroom while we are waiting for our kids to be let out of the classroom.   During the time that we are sitting there, the first graders walk down towards us to get to the lunch room.   So I am sitting there with Kai on my lap and I am giving him a bottle.   It not my usual routine but he is sick this day, and just wants to lie on my lap and take a bottle.   The first graders are led out of their room by Sister Perpetua (honestly her real "sister" name) and I notice "Little Miss Bossy Pants" right away.   She is telling the other kids to stay in line, she is overly concerned about what every one else is doing.   When she gets to the end of the hall where we are, she stops and stands right in front of Kai and I.   She doesn't say anything but starts looking him up and down like she is examining him for a medical appointment.   Finally she looks up at me and announces  "He is WAY too big for a bottle!"   Now I am exhausted, Kai hasn't slept for a week, he is screaming all night long and now little Miss Bossy Pants wants me to answer to her.   In my tired state I decide to lay down the gauntlet to her and say "Really?  How old do you think he is?"   She assesses the situation, re-examines him and states "He is 3 years old!"     HA!! YOU FOOL!  I want to scream but didn't think it was prudent since I am 40 years older than this little girl.   Instead I say, "Well he is only 2 years old...na, na, nana!"  Okay...I didn't say na nana...but I wanted to.    By this time, the little girls class has been gone for a good 5 minutes...I bet Sister Perpetua is grateful for the 5 minutes without Miss Bossy Pants.     Later that same week, I kid you not, this same little girl had another mom (not her own mom) pinned up against the wall asking her questions.   I just heard the mom kept repeating "Bossy Pants (insert her real name) you should go back to your class room now"   I think I saw fear in this womans eyes or desperation to help her get out of the situation.   I kept my head down and was grateful it wasn't me. 
The second bullying encounter is more of an exclusion of being with the 'cool kids' -  the 8th graders!   Every Wednesday Bei's school has to attend Mass in the morning.   In order to help the Kindergarteners learn the Mass they pair each Kindergarten child with an 8th grade buddy...Mass buddy's.   Now isn't that a sweet concept?   I really think it is a great idea, except our 8th grade buddy refuses to sit with us!  Okay, let me back track to explain how I am lucky enough to be going to Mass every Wednesday.   Bei loves his teacher, he loves his school, he loved the idea of having a Mass buddy,  but he hates Mass!  I would have to carry Bei in literally kicking and screaming to school on Wednesdays because he didn't want to go to Mass.   Honestly, carrying Bei into school one or two Wednesdays kicking and screaming is a feat in itself!    I already have a special needs child who needs to be carried and it is not like I get to park by the school.  That is left for buses and kid drop off.   The only thing that would calm Bei down is if I go to Mass with him...I guess his philosphy is misery loves company.   Thanks Bei!   Now believe me I am not the only mom attending Mass with her Kindergarten child and their Mass buddy is at least willing to sit with them.   I admit that there are alot of valid reasons why our Mass buddy might not want to sit with us.   It could be the fact that I am usually doing a full blown aerobic work out and weight training with Kai while sitting at church.   Look at that woman is wearing that child on her head, oh...no...now he is upside down and climbing down her back...oops...she didn't have the strength to hold him by his ankles and he fell to the pew hitting his head and now he is screaming...not for long...he is passing out...thank goodness...at least he is quiet!   Personally, I think the event that put our Mass buddy over the edge with us was when right as communion had started Kai's head got stuck in between the kneeler and the floor and I couldn't get it out.  Our entire row had gone through communion and I am on all four's still trying to get Kai's head unstuck when they return from getting the Eucharist.    That pretty much was the end of our Mass Buddy.   The following Wednesday Bei's teacher told me that Mass Buddy's mom called and said that he feels 'uncomfortable' sitting by us.   ME TOO!  I wouldn't want to sit by me either!   He is 14, he probably goes home and hugs his mom and tells her how lucky he is to have a normal mom.     Now I bring Kai's bottle to church to keep him settled...but that brings up the whole issue of dodging  Miss Bossy Pants. 
The last situation was this past Wednesday where I was apologizing to a 14 year old girl for being loud in church.   Kai was pretty good but was getting restless towards the end of Mass.   He started playing with the hymnal book which sits in a wooden grate on the back of the seat in front of us.   A girl two pews ahead turned around and gave me "the look".   I meekly mouthed "sorry" to her and she gave me 'the nod' like an old school marm.    I think she might be Miss Bossy Pants older sister.
So that is my life of being bullied at the Catholic School!


School for Kai?

All the boys, including Elvis loved playing with the marbles!

Have you ever been in a situation where you are overwhelmed with emotion that you didn't even know you were feeling, until you burst into tears?  This happened to me recently when I visited a private deaf and hard of hearing (HOH) school called  N@rthern Voices.   It is a curriculum that teaches children to listen with the hearing that they have and to speak English.  Sign language is not a part of their curriculum.    Anyway,  I had been there a half an hour and the more I saw, the more hope I had for Kai Kai Sweetie Pie.   The clincher for me was when they brought me to a boy that came into the school in March 2011 at age 4 and was totally non-verbal (like Kai) and he was saying to his teacher "pour water".    Those two words, did me in...the water works began!   Very embarrassing to the say the least, but I realize how much stress I have been carrying around about Kai's language development.     I have been receiving literature from the Deaf and HOH teacher about language development and it is STRESSING ME out!!!  In a good way though because it forced me to get Kai's hearing aids in and keep them in.  I would LOVE for Kai to go to this school but we will have to figure it out from a financial stand point.   It is EXTREMELY expensive.   This school is about 20 to 30 minutes away, can you imagine if I am driving both boys to school how late we are going to be each and every day...yikes!   Oh well, I will cross that bridge when I come to it.

There are two other options for Kai.  One is a Deaf and HOH school that is in another school district but is in colloboration with our school district to send  hearing impaired kids there.   They turned Kai down the first time we requested to go there due to his physical needs.    After visiting  N@rthern Voices I went back to them and said this is crazy that I will have to spend $19,000 a year to send my child to a HOH school, when there is one that is available to taxpayers in our district.   We worked out a proposal that was submitted where Kai would go 3 days to the HOH school and then get Physical Therapy and Speech from our district the other two days.   I heard unofficially that my coordinator said "that is the Cadillac version and that Kai is not getting the Cadillac."    Argh...money, politics, ego's!   These are the same people that come into my house weekly to provide services and tell me that they are advocating for my son to go to the HOH school.   So now I will have to put on my fighting gloves and fight the school district  if I want the public HOH option.   I haven't even toured the public HOH school yet, but I have heard it is really good.  

The second public option is to send him a charter school called the Metro Deaf and Hard of Hearing School in St. Paul.  It is a bilingual program where they are taught American Sign Language and English.   I am sure this is all about funding and the school district doesn't want to lose the money is my guess.   Frustrating to say the least.

The hardest part for me is the fact that I really don't want him to go to school.   I don't want to be away from him.   It took so long for him to bond and now he has become a momma's boy.   A mom on another blog wrote that she really started enjoying her kids when they were 4 years old.   For me, I LOVE 2 year olds!!!!   Kai and I have so much fun  together, we snuggle alot and dance and play with his toys.  He is such a wonderful little boy, I LOVE him so much!   I hate the thought of him not being with me 24 hours a day.     BUT,  I realize I have to take myself out of the equation and do what is best for my little guy and not what is best for me.   HARD! HARD! HARD!  The good news is that I am letting go of the anger and frustration of all of this with the knowledge that God has a plan for Kai.    Could it be that God just wants my little boy to stay home with me????????   I know, I know,  wishful thinking on my part!

Quick update on Kai's hearing aids...he continues to wear them!  Yeah for Kai Kai Sweetie Pie!


Sharing Stuff!

I wanted to share with you some of the idea's and things I have learned from reading other peoples blogs.  

These are canvas prints of photographs that I had taken.   The company can be found at this link http://www.easycanvasprints.com/pictures-on-canvas/    This is so easy to do; you decide on the size of your canvas, upload your picture, pick out the type of frame you want and then you order it.   The quality is really nice and they come with a hanger already attached.  I received these within a week.   Bonus!  I also received 17 gift cards for $10 each when I received the pictures.  They expire on December 31, 2011 and I would love to give you one if you are going to order.   If you want a gift card for $10.00 send me your email at Danlizk@comcast.net  or leave a comment and I will mail the card out to you.   It will be a first come first serve.  

For Kai's pictures you'll notice that I picked a black "frame" which are the top, bottom and sides of the pictures.   For Bei's I had the picture continuously wrap around.   I personally like the black frame better than the wrap around.  We are still trying to figure out where we are going to hang the pictures.  

I learned of this Easy Canvas Prints from a blogger named Lisa.   She is an adoptive mom and a photographer.   The pictures that she took while in China really caught the essence of China.   Her blog is www.thelongroadtochina.com 

The boys and I get up 2 hours before school and ironically we were still getting to school late several times a week.   Ugh!  I am to blame for part of the issue because I am a breakfast Nazi about the kids having a cooked meal before school.    I am a person who is hungry every 2 hours, and if I don't eat...forget it!  I am cranky, lose interest in what I am doing and pretty much shut down.   So I guess I assume other people are like that, so I shovel food into the kids every 2 hours starting with a nice warm breakfast.   It is usually consists of 2 eggs on Hashbrowns.   The second part of why I was struggling to get us to school on time is that I was getting 3 people fed, dressed and out the door.   Bei and I are quite the pair...he loves to be dependent on me and I am a huge enabler!!!   Let's hope that this doesn't translate into a 35 year old Bei still living in my home!!!  He already tells me that he doesn't ever want to go to College because he doesn't want to live away from me.    Anyway, I implemented a reward system for Bei where he would get a sticker if he fed himself, dressed himself, brush teeth and comb his hair, said his prayers.   He gets a bonus sticker if he was a good listener.  Once he receives 30 stickers he can purchase an inexpensive item.   His first purchase was an IPad App.   He is now working towards marbles.   This has been a life changing reward system for the both of us, but mostly Bei.  We are getting to school on time, mornings are fun and easy the way that they should be.  The second picture listed above is of an art project the boys did BEFORE school, because we have alot of time now!  

Once Bei started Kindergarten I realized immediately that I was going to have to get organized.   He has homework that is due.  There are library books to keep track of and return, not to mention all of Kai's therapy's and doctor appointments.    I have my normal date book that I keep track in but then on Sunday evenings I then outline the week which is the picture above.  Included are the words and letter that Bei is working on for that week.  I learned this over at www.memoriesoncloverlane.com     Sarah who writes this blog is  super organized,  can multi-tasked like nobodys business and is wonderfully creative.   

Lastly, I learned about this program called Reading Eggs www.readingeggs.com  It is a great program for pre-schoolers and Elementary Kids that are learning to read.   It costs around $70 for 12 months and they offer a free trial.    We did the free trial and Bei enjoyed it for the most part.  The benefit of this program is that it is a rewards program.  Once you complete a lesson then you receive Eggs that can be traded in to play a fun on-line game.    I learned about this from a mom named  Stefanie who has a boat load of kids.   Her blog is  www.nihaoyall.com


My Favorite Things!

I recently called my sister Nanette to thank her for teaching me how to use bleach with my laundry! It is crazy that I am well into my 40's and never had used bleach because I didn't know how to do it without ruining my clothes.    Anyway, it got me thinking of all the simple pleasures in my life that make it easier and how I really couldn't do without some of these. So here is my list of simple pleasures and why.  

This is really a three fold simple pleasure; a main floor laundry room - oh my gosh, how did I do without?   No wonder the laundry never got done!   Love the fact that it is easy to get to and I don't have to be running down to the basement.   Secondly, I love the new front end washer and dryer.   You can do such more laundry.   Lastly, the laundry sink is a Godsend!   Kai for a while really needed a daily bath because he gets a bottle at night and sometimes the milk gets on him and he is pretty stinky.   My mom suggested I bath him in the laundry tub every morning and it has worked out perfectly.   He loves it, he is clean and fresh as a daisy with very little hassle.  LOVE LOVE LOVE my main floor laundry room!

Does it get any simpler than this?  I don't know what you call these but they catch all the food when you rinse dishes.   We are out in the country and need to be very careful what gets down the drain because we have a septic system.  Doesn't the normal drain stopper always sits in the sink cockeyed?   All these big chunks of food are running down the drain and you wonder why do I have that cockeyed drain in there?   Anyway, this has really fixed the problem for me.   I use this side to rinse and drain foods and wash my dishes on the other side.  My mother in law Rudene suggested this to me and I am on my second one. 

I am not sure what this is called, maybe a lenard?   I am a scatterbrain on my best days.   Honestly, if my head wasn't attached to my body I would spend the day looking for it.   That was my life before I found this lenard or let's call it a key chain.   By the way, Dan hates this lenard or key chain thingy and refuses to wear it.   He must think it is like wearing a sign saying "I am too stupid to keep track of my keys unless they are wrapped around my head".    And yes, I have had a few days that I have looked for my keys and they were wrapped around my neck...but those days are few and far between. 

My computer (with all little fingerprint smudges and all) is definitely my very favorite item because it keeps me connected to the outside world.   My life as I use to know it has shrunk dramatically since getting the kids.   My social world is through the computer.   I read the yahoo news and  I am on several adoption yahoo groups, I love getting emails and keeping up with facebook.   Even this blog is one of my ways to stay connected to all of you and I need my trusty computer to do it.  Feel free to share your favorites!


Another Hearing Day!

Do you see it?  He wore his hearing aids today for approximately 6 hours.   This morning when I first put them in he fought me and then decided he was going to pass out.  I stayed the course this time and didn't let the passing out dissuade me.    All the easier for me to put them in while he is unconscious...right?   Good news is that I got them in before he passed out and then he settled right down...no passing out.   He wore them initially for 1.5 hours.   After that I put them in two different times for about 2 hours each.   He is Mr. Independent and wants to do everything by himself and he gets mad that he can't put them in himself.   Please keep prayersthat we get Kai Kai Sweetie Pie wearing them every day.

Elly thanks for the Cheeseheads!   The boys love them! 

At least Bei and Katherine do!  I think Bei must have been eating a few CHEESEto. 

Oh...I guess Mr. Independent does too...he just wanted to put it on himself.  Anyway, thanks for thinking of the boys!   They will be wearing them on Sunday!  Go Packers! Go! 


Please Pray

Can I ask you all to please pray that Kai will start wearing his hearing aids?   Every day that goes by that he doesn't wear his hearing aids just puts him futher and further behind.    Did you know that you have a hearing age?   I did not know that but you do.   Kai's will always be delayed at least 2.5 years and probably 3 years if we don't get him wearing them.   A statistic that was recently thrown at me is if your child wears his hearing aids only 4 hours each day, it will take 6 years to give him as much listening experience as a normally hearing child accumulates in one year.   And silly me, I was so excited that Kai wore his hearing aids today for 45 minutes.   He has a long way to go, but at least the 45 minutes was a start.  

Anyway, please pray that he gets well (he is sick again) and that he will keep the hearing aids in all day, so that he can really start on a course of learning a verbal language.   We really really need prayers!!!!