Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A thought about the Kindle

I got a comment asking about the Kindle, and I started writing a long response long it turned into a post. The boys and I had a marvelous time at the Dino event. It was a bit short for the amount of money spent but just the right time for my boys and those Dinos were amazing! Pictures and more to come but for now I am back to packing, leaving in 5 is my Kindle response.

I love my Kindle, It really is like reading a book. E Paper is an amazing thing. I work on the computer all day so I was hesitant about looking at a another screen, but after a few pages and an adjustment of the typeface (which is super easy) I have never looked back. I think I actually read faster on the Kindle becuase I can adjust the type and not have to contort myself or my wrist every time I change position. I also avoid that awkward thing where one part of the book is much thicker than the other and your wrist starts to hurt. (but maybe I am a wimp)

It did take me a minute or two to get the turning the page at the right time concept. I never realized that with a paper book I turned the page while reading the last few words. So with the Kindle I would click over and realize that I had skipped something. I guess I mastered it now, I just had to think for the first few chapters.

Its an amazing thing, I have spent more on books in the last few weeks, just becuase getting them and reading them was so instant- no waiting. The book I was in the mood for, just when I wanted it. Like tonight, on the train, I downloaded a kids book...and suddenly I have two very well behaved boys on my hands. The book is called How to Get a Gorilla Out of Your Bathtub and it written by John Hall. This was the first picture or children's book that I have downloaded and all in all its not bad. The pictures looked great and the story was good. My only caveat is that the pictures and the words that go with them don't always line up or go on the same page. I guess becuase of the font setting they really just can't match it up. But I would hope that they could put some sort of linker or tab function, maybe I am just picky.

Oh and the battery. If you keep your "whispernet" off unless you want to look in the store your battery will last a whole novel. once you turn the "whispernet" on you start to lose power a bit quicker, but still I have never seen my battery go to less than half power and I charge the thing maybe, once a week.

All in all, I am really glad I have one. It will save me a TON of wall space.

Ok, packing, yeah...Have a good weekend.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Being Busy and reading books

What's On Your Nightstand

When I am really busy, I mean, overwhelmingly busy- I procrastinate. Eventually I get it all done but when I am feeling overwhelmed I will do anything to avoid the task....So I wrote this at work, and I am publishing it now. Ever notice how when you say you have no time to blog, you suddenly find the time?

So I am blogging! and reading! and writing! and looking at all the camping supplies on my living room floor and hoping that I magically have enough stuff and it all packs itself inside my car. Cinderella's mice friends perhaps? Anyone got a magic wand for me?

So the books. My boyfriend, wonderful guy he is, bought me a Kindle as my early anniversary gift. This little device will be the death of me. I Love love love love it, too much. To the point that I am reading more than anything else lately. (this also means that I have to get him something really really nice and thoughtful for our anniversary)

So anyway what am I reading? I just finished the first 3 books of the Twilight series By Stephanie Meyer. They are extremely easy reads but I wanted to know what everyone was talking about. I hate not knowing what is going on. The books are interesting and engaging. They are the kind of page turners that make a liar out of you when you say "I will go to bed after I read this chapter" and the clock already says 1:30 am. The next time you look up its 3 am and you only have 50 pages left until your done with the whole book so you finish it and download (thank you Kindle) the next in the series.

The love story is teenage but nice, at least for me, becuase I still wish I was closer to 18 then 30. I love mythology type stuff and the author's take on vampire legends is different yet in congruence with the current popular mythology. I like how the Book is told through the eyes of Belle, the main character....but I have no idea how they are going to translate it into a movie. I know all books are better than there movie kin, but in this case I am not even sure I want to see it. I just don't think a translation can be done.

So, after those books I started Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister by Gregory Maguire. He is the same author that wrote Wicked and Son of a Which. I loved both of those books and thought that I should give some of his lesser known stuff a try. So far, I am not liking this one as much but I am only about 4 chapters in. I am hoping that it will get better.

And yes, that is my Kindle sitting on a Coleman portable toilet...I really hope that I don't ever have to use it...wish me luck.

A wish for time

I have so much to blog!

I want to write about a wonderful weekend that I had with all of my boys, it included a train robbery, a bike ride in the park, ice cream and a beautiful day at the beach. So much family love and togetherness that my heart nearly exploded.

See the brotherly love? It was during the tension filled (lol) part of the train robbery where they track the robbers down to there lair!

And riding our bikes to and from the park. It was a long ride...I am so proud that they made it.

I want to write all about our upcoming trip to see Walking with Dinosaurs LIVE!
on Wednesday and then leaving to go camping in West Virgina on Thursday morning! What was I thinking? My living room is covered with camping supplies and ready to eat meals. A tent, chairs, a stove, bubbles, shovels and about a million flash lights and lanterns. Boyfriend actually asked me if I was suddenly afraid of the dark or something. It all needs to be put in my car TONIGHT AHHH!

And then, oh dear do I want to talk politics... although I know that I shouldn't...I just HOPE HOPE HOPE that people are out there watching and paying attention. Really reading and just thinking a lot.

AND net neutrality. This video shocked me and I want to get involved..but how? I hope just being aware will help keep the big companies out of my internet for as long as I can help it. Please give it a few minutes of your time and watch. My eyes were certainly opened.

Oh and Dino Boy got pulled from camp. It was just better that way, he was adjusting but he needs less stress in his life. So he and little man will be hanging at there Dad/Grandparents house for most of the rest of the I sad? Yeah, but this summer was a learning experience and next summer will be better.

Ok, blog world. Hopefully I will have wonderful trip pics to post when I get back. If I get back, do they have bears in West Virgina? LOL

Monday, July 21, 2008

A Post to Post

The boys and I had a fantastic weekend. It was busy, fun, loving and deserves a really great post with pictures and smiles and loving fan fare. But this is not going to be that post. Mommy is sleepy and kid lunches have yet to be started. And I am not going to even mention how dirty the kitchen floor is.... you just don't want to know.

So what to post? Becky stole a cute little questiony thingy from a blog and I am going to steal it as well....Its questions that you can answer with only one it goes.

One, word...a challenge.

  1. Where is your cell phone? Hand
  2. Your significant other? Tomorrow
  3. Your hair? Wavy
  4. Your mother? Vacation
  5. Your father? Busy
  6. Your favorite thing? Reading
  7. Your dream last night? Didn't
  8. Your favorite drink? Dunkin
  9. Your dream/goal? Progress
  10. The room your in? Messy
  11. Your friends? Diverse
  12. Your fear? Vulnerability
  13. Where do you want to be in six years? Smiling
  14. Where were you last night? home
  15. What your not? Productive
  16. Muffins? corn
  17. One of your wish list items? painted
  18. Where you grew up? Shore
  19. The last thing you did? Phone
  20. What are you wishing? maid
  21. Your TV? TIVO
  22. Your pets? Cats
  23. Your computer? Addiction
  24. Your life? Hetic
  25. Your mood? Sleepy
  26. Missing someone? BF
  27. Your car? Amazing :)
  28. Something your not wearing? Earrings
  29. Favorite store? overspend
  30. Your summer? Insane
  31. Loves? Comforting
  32. Your favorite word? Relax
  33. Last time you laughed? Aaron
  34. Last time you cried? Wrenching
Maybe I will get to last weekend by next weekend LOL

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Notes to share

Just a some thoughts.

  1. When you call Disney's Toontown online to cancel your 4 years old's subscription be prepared to stay on hold for 15 minutes (that will feel like an hour) listening to the Home on the Range soundtrack, complete with a little child's voice introducing each song as the best song EVVVER
  2. When you tell your kid that he can take a few things out of the basement and play with them he will take you up on your generosity.
The adventure will start out like this (godzilla and godzilla's family attacking the city)

And end up like this

If the city has been saved why does the living room look devastated?

An Adventure

Well, I would like to say that the adventurous part of my day began when the camp bus arrived at 4:30pm. But in truth the wheels for this adventure probably began when I took the Little Man for a doctor's visit this morning.

Little man has a lump in his neck, just this odd bump thing that bugged me, so I had it checked. The doc informs us that its an infection of the lymph nodes. So off we were to the pharmacy for a ten day dose of augmentin, apparently this needs to be watched because there is a small chance that it could turn into mono. "But don't worry mom, send him to camp anyway." Ok, give him his first dose, drop him off at camp, talk to the director "The boy are adjusting great, Dino Boy is doing well..making friends, he is so funny and is just getting along well with the new counselor" She is singing my sons' praises. I am happy . . Go to work.... All is well....

4:30. Kids get off the bus. Dino Boy opens the conversation with "Mom, don't send me to jail" uh oh. "Don't worry kid, just tell me what happened" So basically his version goes something like this. He lost his underwear at camp. Who knows. It happens, they change into bathing suits twice a day. I wasn't worried about it. But then he said that someone saw him without his pants on. Ok, still not worried. Its camp, he lost his issue. Then he said that I shouldn't answer the phone if the principal called....hmmmm...

4:45 Not 5 minutes later the phone rang. It was the camp director. Enter the sound of the teacher talking in Charlie Brown. This woman (who wasn't there at the time) says that Dino Boy asked someone or some people or something (she was not specific) if they"Would like to see his_______" I can only assume that she meant penis but she never said the word. That alone bothers me, if you are calling to complain about my kid, at least say what he did, really.

But anyway he didn't show anyone anything but he asked the question, without underwear on. He had pants on, but well, lets forget reason here. So anyway she was pretty vague here but she has to file some sort of report and then if any parents call action might be taken, what kind of action I asked. "uummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, well, ummm, not sure here, but I needed to let you know" so I respond, very apologetically "Now I know that there are no excuses for inappropriate behavior and Dino Boy will be talked to and lose computer and all that, but, well, you know that Asperger's is a SOCIAL DISORDER. He doesn't get the whole inappropriate context, we will explain it all but he really meant no harm."

But here she does a 180 and suddenly, my son, who was wonderful, and progressing and smart and funny this morning is suddenly, again, "Too much for the camp to handle, never happened before...blah, blah, blah, blah." And in my head I am thinking don't give me that load of crap. I worked camp for YEARS I taught for YEARS this stuff happens all the time. You explain to parents, apologize, talk to kids. It happens, get over your perfect camp where no one has ever said something wrong.

Ok, so conversation over. Talking to Dino boy, calling ex husband, basically busy with explaining and deciding what to do next and all that stuff when....
Augmentin enters the picture. Little man has had side effect number 1 and pooped his pants. He is upset, I am still on the phone with ex husband, trying to wash and clean Little man. I put the soiled underwear in the toilet to sit for a second. Little man is naked and poop is everywhere and he has to PEE. RIGHT NOW. I tell him to pee in the potty, on the undies and I will figure it out later. I still have the phone in one hand. Ex Husband wants to talk to Dino Boy. I leave the bathroom to hand a crying, upset Dino Boy the phone...and then I hear it.


The underwear has just been sent down the toilet. I guess all those months of reminding him to flush have just kicked in.

Little man is crying. They were apparently his FAVORITE pair of underwear (I had no clue someone could love a pair of green boxers so much)

So crying Little man, crying Dino Boy, laughing ex husband.

and it was only 5:45

The plumber will be coming in the morning, the pizza will be here any minute. I am so happy that we have 2 toilets.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

NJ Pass scores plus Autism the Musical make for a crying mommy

Warning! Major Vent!

So Dino Boy just finished first grade. He had to take a test. The NJ Pass...I hate tests. Well, I don't hate tests, I liked school. I loved college and learning and tests- well, cause I was pretty good at telling the teacher what they wanted to hear- I got A's and even became a teacher.

But now, I hate tests. I remember, vaguely, the week that Dino Boy had to take this test. He was nervous, scared even. But then they decided not to give him the test with the class. He got to take it on random days with the school counselor. He was still nervous of course but he didn't know when he was gonna take the test so he couldn't panic ahead of time. I thought this would help him.

I didn't focus on the test. Just try, hell, just try to sit. That is all I care about. Please Dino Boy be happy, don't panic, mommy doesn't care what the test says, I know you are brilliant and no one in the world knows more about dinosaurs than you, just, please, BREATHE.

And that is what I am telling myself now. Breathe. I am used to high test scores. I got them. My ADHD brother who flunked out of every class still ACED every standardized test that was put in front of him and to be frank he (Uncle Frog) is the smartest person I know. So Dino Boys scores? He did better in math than language arts. I knew that. He hates to read. He can't scan, his sight words are just gone, I try to review and get him to read but making him sit at the table is more than half the battle. ( We are working on this and hope exists) But still on the NJ pass overall scale of 1,2,3, he got a 1 Basic. Minimal skills... some areas better than others but none were really, well, passing.

Language arts. worse. Basic again, but this times in ways that I really don't get. I mean, he can recite a story to me tell me details days later. But he couldn't recite for a test? Was is that boring? Could he not fill in the bubble? He loves to be read to, he may not sit for it but it all gets in there....what happened?

I don't know whether to cry or throw the f*c>ing test out the f*c>ing window or say that Its ok, this was pre IEP, pre summer occupational therapy, pre my Asperger's book binge, pre internet support group. Next year he will have the same teacher(not yet sure if that is good or not) , an aide, speech, in school OT, maybe out of school OT too.

Should I care? Does school just suck?

For all of you joining in progress...down here.

Now, the crying part. I have had Autism the musical on my Tivo for a LONG LONG time. I have wanted to watch it, meant to watch it, started to watch it. But lets face up to the truth. I was scared to watch it. I don't know what I was scared of exactly. But I started watching it a few days ago. I watched in mini sections, took my time. Laughed, cried and digested. My son is really a cross between two kids there. Wyatt and Henry. It was stunning to see it. Henry and his mom basically performing a replay of the activities that I do everyday- deja freaky. Dinos and eras and time travel and the ways that a prehistoric tiger is related to the modern day cat, its me...only blonder, skinnier and probably smarter.

So the moms in the movie started to talk about the kids' futures. And these kids are from all over the spectrum. I can understand that some parents are really scared about what will happen to the kids after they aren't kids anymore. I am scared of this too but I guess in the back of my head I keep thinking that Dino boy will be ok, I can teach him to be ok, he is always making progress, progress is good. But then the scores came. What if he isn't ok? What if he doesn't figure out a way to be happy and live and exist on his own. What if he isn't the next Daniel Tammet and he can't figure it all out.

I know this is more about me than him. My fears, my needs, my wanting him to be happy. But what is happy anyway? My definition for sure isn't his.

Do we all have these fears or do we block them out and push them down because we need to get to OT and get dinner on the table. He is 7...who the heck cares if he gets patterns and algebra. Who needs this pushed down curriculum that teaches them things that I didn't know until I was 12.

I swear I have funny posts. I have a hole notebook that I am slowly filling with funny phrases, antics and bits and pieces. I mean really, I found a can of lima beans in my purse today...and Dino boy strapped a clock to his chest and became the all powerful TIME BOY super hero. But when its late and I want to vent, I think scary things and that is just what my fingers happened to have typed tonight.

Out of it

I need sleep, really, I mean, its BAD...I do Human Resources Stuff at a small company...about 20 minutes ago I realized that I was about to forget to do payroll....I am SOOOO with it this week.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Kids, No kids- A life divded

I have said it before and I am sure I will say it 100 more times (or a billion, I won't count if you won't) I am divorced. And pretty fortunately the boys' Dad is a very active father. This is a relatively new thing. And by new I mean post divorce.

When we were married the man passed out upon coming home from work, woke up for dinner and then passed out again only to wake up to play video games once the children were safely asleep for the night. But now that we are divorced (for about 2 years now) he is a great Dad. He cares, he comes to doctor visits, he is in on the IEP and we make most of the major parenting decisions together. (Enter lots of odd, awkward conversations when one of us over shares or the other wants to know something that the other doesn't want to give up, picture two people doing a stare down at the local Starbucks- yep, that is what they put the tables there for...and you thought it was Wi-fi)

He even takes the kids one night a week and every other weekend. I can hear you thinking...Did this girl just say that she gets one night a week and alternating weekends off? I know I know, Most mothers would crawl over jagged glass for a free, reliable babysitter, I mean just food shopping alone, buying a bra without multiple children hanging from your leg or even, hell, just getting her eyebrows waxed without a four year old putting his fingers in hot wax.. yeah ....I KNOW that I am blessed.

Its odd though, this system of ours. He never wants to go more than 4 days without seeing his let me spell this out...stick with me here...if its my kid weekend he takes them the Thursday night prior to my weekend. I have them Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday...His night night Wednesday, Thursday, then his weekend starts Friday at 4 pm. I get them back on Sunday, he takes them on Thursday, the cycle repeats....So after school stuff? Doctors visits? I do my best not to have them on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday nights. Birthday parties? Oh dear. We pass them on to the parent that has the kids that weekend. If its during the week whoever has the kids takes them to the party unless one of us is friendly with that parent...we talk and feel this stuff out for the most part. But either way my calender is filled with the letters NK, K, NK, K...I just can't do that kind of projection in my head.

In some ways this is PERFECT. I mean, every book that I have ever read on Asperger's Syndrome says that a parent must try to find time for themselves, a hobby, a way of keeping sane. And I have one. Its court ordered! I get to ride my bike, do kid free food shopping and hang out with friends. Feel free to yell, curse and hate me right about this second...I think I would hate me too if I were reading this Its pretty neat, except I think I may be developing a split personality.

Make a list of all this things that you would rather do with out your kids. I'll start you off with food more? Great. but you do them anyway, you drag the kids along. People stare, your kids learn manners and Target lives on after you have left. Now picture trying to schedule all those things into one night a week and every other weekend. I run around like a person whose to do list is going to burn a hole through her hand.

This mommy thing is a mindset. You don't even realize it until you don't have to be mommy on a regular basis. Switching back and forth can do a number on you. Am I the mommy in control of the youngins or am I the single girl on a date or at a kegger with her boyfriend? This has happened. Someday I will post pictures.

Ever start a post at 9pm but finish it at 11pm and wonder what you were trying to say? I am so tired and it is a mommy night- camp lunches need to be made. Why this post took so long? Why it was started until 9? That is another post entirely.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


So, no time to post a true history

Fact 1-We live in NJ.

Fact 2-Did I mention that I have two active boys?

Fact 3- We like Dinosaurs and love to have museum adventures.
Fact 4, its 12:30 (midnight) and the Dino Boy and Little man will be up in 6 hours. I am now a blog addict. But you have to write to get better right? Stick with me...please...

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Naming the boys

The next major question for my entry into the blog world...What do I call the boys?

Coming up with their names the first time was hard enough, now I need a pseudonym? Oh geez. Well you may have noticed at Autism Sucks Rocks I referred to them as BB (Big Brother) and LB (Little Brother) but that so does not do them justice. So Thing 1 and Thing 2? CRAP Terrible Mother over at offspring claimed that one.

So what? How about... Dino Boy? The big kid LOVES know how a lot of Asperger's kids have an obsession? Dinosaurs have been his love since near birth. Since he was little he could set them up in the most detailed ways, meat eaters with meat eaters battling in size order. He can speak with confidence (whether you are listening or not) about every kind of dinosaur, what they ate, where they lived and what caused them to die out. The discovery channel movie Walking with Dinosaurs- we have owned 3 copies, they just kept getting worn out. Oh yeah and this picture? I didn't even get the whole set up and it was taken when he was 5.

And for the little man...I am racking my brain on this one. He loves so many things and asks so many questions. He is precocious, loves to play with Knights and "fighting games". He LOVES animals and will pet anything I let him. We have two cats but that isn't enough for this little man, he wants another dog (he already has one at daddy's house) birds, a lizard and a snake. The little man...wait, I just did it didn't I? I said it 3 times in the same paragraph...Little Man.

So, here it is, Dino Boy and Little Man. Two names with character that, while based on personality, aren't really going anywhere. The big kid will probably always have a love Dinos and beasts and prehistoric time and the Little one will always be my Little man.

So for next did I get here? If you are reading this (and really, thanks for bearing with me if you are) you probably want to know some history, back story or other interesting tid bit. I will see if I can get to that journey soon.

Oh and special thanks to computer programmer boyfriend for the neat embedding thing....I will need your help lots love.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Major issue

Would you like to know my major issues right now? I want to work on this blog while I am at work. I can think of nothing else except how to frame the story I want to tell, make it funny, readable ect. I even want to make an outline. I haven't made an outline since College!!

Is this what a blog is going to do to me? Make me less productive at work?

wait, wait....

I was already unproductive. At least now instead of buying stuff that I don't want or need I will have something to show for my laziness..

The First Post

Everyone seems to start their blog saying Hi! Hey world, this is me! and I guess I will be no different, except to say "me" is a single mom with two boys and that "me" is a evolving concept that has yet to be defined in any way.

I guess I just need a place to vent, laugh and keep the ball rolling. I love my kids, they are funny kids...but they are funny kids that drive me nuts to no end. Finding people to commiserate with me will be great, finding people that really don't mind my somewhat fowl language and really really bad spelling will be even better. (you know that world language up there? when spell check found it, it thought I was spelling sugar cane...yeah spell check was made for ME)

So I hope if someone out in cyberspace finds this they stick around, becuase I think it will get better...hope, maybe....