Saturday, November 13, 2010

Speech again

Kai got a note sent home from school recently; it's been sitting on my kitchen counter and I haven't responded to it yet. The note irks me and it probably shouldn't. But it does. It came from the Learning Assistance Coordinator regarding his speech needs. They suggest that he participate in a "muscle-based therapy approach" that is "highly recommended" by a Speech and Language Therapist contracted by the school.

Now, to get it across, I am not against him needing more speech therapy, nor am I against this program or even the note. It's just that I am feeling frustrated that we have this in the first place, when I mentioned it last year that he still needed therapy. But then, they shrugged me off with a "all grade one children pronounce things wrong" comment, even when I knew they didn't. Just Kai.

He still struggles with pronouncing Ls and Rs. Case in point: the other day, while in the van driving to church, he was telling us about this "squorol" that came with some action figure. (I really had no idea what he was talking about, and even after learning what he said, I was still confused!) I corrected him in my head that he said SCROLL. It's what made sense to me. This figure came with a scroll. Okay. But I was wrong. Abi tried to decifer what he was saying as well, and we finally learned that he said it came with a SQUIRREL. (yeah, I don't get it!) It's simple words like that that he can't nunciate. Things that he's struggled with for over a year.

When he was in Kindergarten, he attended Speech Therapy at a private clinic on a bi-weekly basis until his ST said that he had graduated to his grade level by that Spring. We were pleased; all was well. He still continued some assistance in class, but we all thought he was good enough at the end of the year. When grade one arrived, I wondered if he'd need to see the Learning Assistance during school again, and after the first month passed, I inquired about it, just to have the coordinator tell me it wasn't necessary as he was still within that grade one acceptability level. I didn't agree, but let it slide. After all, they didn't feel he needed it and I didn't want to burden over-worked LA staff by fighting it, and we couldn't afford the fee at the private clinic, so there wasn't much I could do. But as the year started to wind down, and his speech didn't get any better, I was starting to feel a bit concerned. So this year, I was hoping for someone else at school to notice it too! Thankfully, I was able to talk to his teacher about it in September, and she agreed to his delayment. Thus the note.

Yet it still sits on my kitchen counter. I haven't sent the permission slip back yet and it's been two weeks. I know he needs the help, but I'm not too sure if this program is going to do it. It's the same one he was on in Kindergarten, using horns and straws "to develop specific muscle skill, tone and strength needed for proper speech." Did it help him in Kindergarten? Is it going to help him now? I feel torn. Although, the $30 for the (non-reusable) straws and horns is a better price than paying for private therapy, I am still feeling unsure.

Kai still needs help, it's obvious (thankfully, he hasn't noticed his struggles and he doesn't feel embarrassed by his pronunciation. I'd hate for him to be weighed down by this.) but I worry about choosing the right method with him. Maybe this is the way to go for now, and we assess it again in January. I should just sign the silly note and get his therapy going, shouldn't I?!


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I *heart* drummers

Drumming is a "family thing". Or I like to think it is. My uncle was/is a drummer. My brother is a drummer. I'm hoping one of my boys is a drummer. It just seems like something that needs to stay in the family! Needless to say, I've grown up listening to drumming. It is such an amazing instrument and I admit to having girly crushes on really talented drummers! *smile* I love the beat, the thrumming in your chest, and the mood and intensity it brings. How could someone not like drums? Isn't that everyone's favourite instrument in a parade? (that, followed by bagpipes, of course!)

I came across this video recently of a young drummer in Florida who is amazing and I knew I'd have to share it with you!

Ricky Ficarelli

Monday, November 8, 2010

Waves Of Grace

This song touches me deeply that I end up listening to it over and over again. May you feel His waves of grace wash over you today too.

This is performed by Trinity Western University Praise Chapel, right here in Langley.

Waves Of Grace

The walls are high, the walls are strong
I’ve been locked in this castle
That I’ve built for far too long
You have surrounded me, a sea on every side
The cracks are forming and I’ve got nowhere to hide

Now I see
The walls I’ve built are falling
And Your waves of grace are washing over me
(Repeat x2)

My heart’s been hard, I have been blind
I have often worked so hard to keep You from my mind
I have ruled my life, in a palace built on sand
I want You to reign, Lord, take me by the hand

Lord please reign in every part
I give my life to You, I open up my heart
I want to be like You, I want to seek Your face
O Lord please wash me in Your awesome waves of grace

Songwriter: David Noble

Sunday, November 7, 2010

8 going on 13

Abi practiced her babysitting skills the other night. She helped bathe the Youngers, then read them stories and tucked them into bed. It made me smile. She's such a sweetheart. In just four years, I'll be able to rent her out hourly. I mean, she'll be able to make some extra money. I loved babysitting and know she will too. She already asks when she's allowed to start! *smile*

Abi's starting to grow up and as much as it excites me, it makes me nervous. During the summer, she did another First: she walked to the gas station down the street by herself. Well, almost by herself. She went with her older cousin, whom I trusted. I knew she was responsible enough to get there safely, but she still needed to pass a test first. I needed her to be able to tell me the directions and route she was taking. She struggled with communicating, and there were some tears and anger that her parents would demand such a cruel task, but she did it! We gave her my cell phone with instructions to call us when she arrived, and when she did 7 minutes later, it was the voice of a confident, mature girl on the other end. (albeit one with a young high-pitched voice!)

My little girl is growing up.

I read an article where it said that "eight is the new thirteen" and at first I wasn't too sure I agreed. But then all these little things were pointed out that got me thinking. A lot of children are doing thing much earlier than before. How many kids have seen PG-13 movies and been under 13? And yes, I am aware is it "parental guidance" and it's "okay" if accompanied by an adult, and is a decision a parent needs to make for their child, but how many parents just say "yes" without considering the consequences? We expose our children to too much too early. My girl is only eight and I want her to stay a child for the time she's supposed to. She doesn't need a cell phone or spa treatments or to watch drama-filled teen movies or tv shows.

One weekend recently, my Hunny was bored and like most men, decided to flip through the tv channels. I find that irksome (I have a love-hate relationship with tv that I don't understand) and he ended up on the Family Channel and the kids watch a few of their "family shows, which I find even more irksome: fake characters who are either all stupid, vain, clumsy or overdramatic. {grr} I was quite surprised at the shows we watched; shows that are "good" because they don't contain sex or violence and are of families. But have you ever actually watched these? In the two we watched, the main male characters are apx 14 years old, yet they try to act suave, trying to win over the girls with winks, nods and the catch phrase, "hey baby" like little Players. Are you serious? Is this what we want our kids to watch? Is this what I want my own children to base their impression of "real" teenagers on? Is this how I want my own boys to think they're supposed to act? And the girls aren't any better being stupid and vain and dressing sexy!

I'm just not ready for this next stage of my child's life to begin. She's still a Child. It amazes me at how many people find these shows, these characters, these movies, these games appropriate. I am so happy my children are sheltered. I'm glad they're not exposed to over-sexed under-aged "role models" (yes, I"m looking at your, Miley) I'm glad that I'm still the main influence in their life and that they still base their opinions on what I say. ( a humbling realization. I have the power to mold their minds, to build up character or lead them to ignorance and apathy)

I am confident in the direction Abi is going, but it's a scary world to release her to. I am thankful that, even though she is a bit more mature than I was at that age, she still loves the Disney Fairies and Webkinz. She's not turning into a teenager or expecting to be treated like one at her next birthday! I still have a few more years to prepare her for that!

Friday, November 5, 2010

when prayers get answered

Do you ever struggle when God answers you? I do and I feel silly for it. Okay, I only mostly feel silly when it finally occurs to me that I've been treading cautiously with Him and His promises. But I am incredibly suspicious. I'd like to say it's because I'm being Discerning, but I'm really just Doubtful. I pray for things, I lament about my wants, I cry over my wishes, and when He grants them I doubt His ability. And mine.

First I just don't want to believe it's true and that it's happened. Denial. Then as it sinks in, I start to have my own self doubts. Maybe I shouldn't have prayed this. Maybe this was a bad idea. Maybe this is more like a Consequence than a Blessing. What have I done?

But tonight, as those words popped into my head, and tears started to sting my eyes (because I'm an emotional gnome), I read a post by KingdomMama that hit me. I can do All Things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

When God answers my prayers, it is a blessing, not a curse. When He gives me a gift, it is because He knows I can handle it. When He chooses to change our lives, it is because He sees the end result.

I don't have to disbelieve Him. or Myself. It's true that I can't do it on my own, but He never asked me to. And I am going to rejoice in His answering of prayer and ignore the voices that try to get me to focus on other things, like my fears. He has blessed me and He believes in me and that's all that matters.

Monday, November 1, 2010

break's almost over

I took a break. A long break. I don't know if I've ever had this long of a break from here before. And it came out of nowhere, for no reason. I just stopped coming here and checking out the blogs and didn't get around to updating anything. No reason. Other than being tired, of course. But other than that, since that's normal for me, it was abrupt.

I can't say if I'm "back" or not, I just felt like popping in again. But maybe that's how things start. If it was so easy for to just stop, theoretically it should be just as easy to get back into the habit of blogging. I always have things on my mind...I've just got to get them into written word.

...and that's all I have.
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