IEP & a kindergarten plan

Believe it or not, Daniel will be 5 next month. FIVE. I’m in denial. But my denial won’t stop it from happening, so when I had Daniel’s IEP meeting last Friday, it was also a kindergarten transition meeting. Even though he won’t be changing schools, (his preschool is at our home school) he will be changing therapy teams, because the preschool therapists only work with preschool kids. So! This meeting included everyone on his current team (PT, OT, SLP, & preschool teacher) and everyone who will be on his team next year (new PT, OT, & SLP, a kindergarten teacher, behavioral psychologist, and teachers from both the resource room and the intensive resource room. Plus some admin people. It was a full room.)

First we went over current goals (all going well, making progress) and discussed what he’ll be working on through the rest of this preschool year and during the Extended School Year (summer school.) He’s progressed enough in most areas that they’ll move from evaluating him against the 0-3 year scale to evaluating him against the 3-6 year scale. (That gives a pretty good idea where he’s at developmentally- he’s basically on par with a 3 year old for gross motor and fine motor, quite a bit further behind on social & communication skills.)

Next we went over the plan for kindergarten. The recommendation the team gave was to have Daniel placed in a traditional kindergarten classroom and also spend time in the Intensive Resource Room. The IRR is (you may have guessed) more intensive than the regular resource room. The benefits for Daniel are that the IRR provides daily therapy practice, in addition to being pulled out of class for speech/OT/PT, and provides him his own workspace for subjects where he is far enough behind his peers that it doesn’t make sense for him to be in the traditional classroom for those subjects. The IRR has its own teacher and is tiny, in terms of student numbers. (Currently only 2 kids are assigned to it, they are also both boys with Down syndrome, which made me smile.) They also provide music therapy, which I’m sure Daniel will LOVE. Daniel will also have a para (a helper) assigned to him who will be with him all day. (The IRR will also help train the para in how to incorporate Daniel’s therapy practice into his regular classroom stuff.) Kindergarten in our district is 1/2 day, unless you want to pay for full day. However, because Daniel needs so many therapies and extra help AND we want him to spend time with his typical peers, the team recommended on his IEP that he be placed in a full day class (with fees waived, since this is considered part of his services.) They gave a sample schedule to show how his day would go, and reassured me that he’d be spending more than half his day in the traditional classroom. It all sounds pretty great, and I feel sure Daniel will thrive.

Kindergarten! 3 kids in school ALL DAY LONG! Pretty crazy.

Over again

And just like that, November is over. Let’s not lie, my writing this month was a big fat disappointment. And I don’t even have anything good to end on, because my brain is mush. But! This weekend I’m singing in a choir at a nativity display which combines two of my favorite things: singing and nativities ❤️ 

Plus, start of December means my kids will stop harassing me about when they can start their advent calendars! (Y’all I had to make a deal about what time they can open them in the morning. Will offered me 4, 5, or 6 am. FOUR AYE EM. I vetoed that nonsense. I said 6. I predict they will opened by 5:58.)

Anyway. On to December! 

Decorating favorites

I have boxes (and boxes and boxes) of Christmas decorations. And a limited space to decorate. Also small children who further limit what I can put out and where. Point is, I switch out what I get out year to year. Maybe someday when the kids are older I’ll make our house look like a Christmas store. But not this year! 

Anyway. Here’s a couple of favorite things I put out this year. I know they don’t really match (and they kind of make me hate the wall color in the living room) but I love them. 



Because how can you not love glittery trees & a light up joy sign?

Now. Show me your favorite decorations! 

Out with a whimper

Nothing like a puking kid to end a long weekend, AMIRITE?! Ugh.  

I AM glad she wasn’t sick on Thanksgiving, but now she has to stay home from school tomorrow and, not gonna lie, I was looking forward to tomorrow being a school day. 

At what point do kids stop getting every bug that goes around school? That DOES HAPPEN, RIGHT? 

*sigh*

Yesterday was great. I mean, minus the cranberry/marshmallow fiasco. Got the tree up and decorated, got the other Christmas stuff put out, did some house cleaning, didn’t cook AT ALL. Generally awesome. 

But then I wasn’t tired at my usual bedtime, (10 pm because I’m an old lady) so I didn’t fall asleep until around 11:30. And then Lydia got up at midnight. And you know, she’s LYDIA, so of course she wouldn’t go back to sleep. Around 12:30 I brought her to bed with me where she proceeded to keep us both up until 2 am. And of course everyone was up for the day by 5:30. Not a great start. Then I got to take Daniel to the pediatrician’s office for a Saturday sick-visit! His right ear has had some drainage and despite his tubes it hasn’t cleared up, so to the doctor we go! Or went, I guess. Pediatrician took a look, told me it was too goopy to see anything (couldn’t even tell me if the tube was in place!) and that while they normally just do ear-drops for kiddos with tubes, he thought with how small Daniel’s ear canals are, and how much goop he’s got in there, ear drops wouldn’t even get far enough into his ear to work. So! Oral antibiotics for Mr. Daniel. 

Then I spent all afternoon with a migraine due to last night’s non-sleep shenanigans. Point is- today? LESS GREAT. Fingers crossed for tomorrow. 

Try again next year

Growing up we would sometimes string cranberries and marshmallows to put on the Christmas tree. (A couple times we tried to sting popcorn, but that nonsense is HARD.) Anyway! I always thought it was fun, so last year I decided to do it with the kids. Recreate the memories and all that. It was…interesting. I didn’t think about how sticky fresh marshmallows would be and WHOA they are sticky. And then I forgot to put them on the tree before the ornaments so I used them as a garland instead. At least, I used them as a garland for a few days until Lydia ate most of it.

This year I was determined to do better. I opened the marshmallows early so they would get stale! I reminded everyone like a dozen times that the garland needed to go on the tree before ornaments! I had the kids all amped up to do it! And the stringing part did go better. The marshmallows were much easier to string stale, and I made sure not to make the strings too long (another issue we had last year.) But them everything seemed…sticky. The cranberries were dripping juice. EVERYWHERE. Turns out this was my fault. I bought the cranberries early and then put them in the freezer. And thawing cranberries drip juice everywhere! So I learned today! So our beautiful garland is currently outside on our deck where it will probably be eaten by squirrels and/or birds. (I should probably throw it away.) 

Anyway. Next year! Third time’s a charm! If I screw things up again next year I probably won’t ever do this again. 

Thanksgiving

Brian smoked our turkey, I made pumpkin pies (with a very messy first attempt at butter crust. Tasted fine. Kind of a disaster to make.) and we had all the delicious sides that Thanksgiving needs. So no cranberry sauce, because nobody needs that. Everything was EXCELLENT, so obviously the big hit of the meal were the pillsbury croissants. Whatever, more leftovers for me! (Will wouldn’t even eat pumpkin pie. That he asked for. Only the whipped cream.)

Now I’m in bed watching Netflix and wondering how soon is too soon to start eating leftovers. 

The milestones and the mess

Let’s hear the saga of Daniel’s new levels of destructiveness shall we? Here goes. 

I have been saying for a LONG time now that I was dreading the day Daniel started climbing out of his crib and also the day he learned to work doorknobs. LIVING IN FEAR even. Well friends, that day has come. 

A month ago, after a couple days of refusing to stay in his crib, we transitioned it to a toddler bed. And then took this picture. Actual bedtime was a disaster. 

Then, within a week, he learned to work doorknobs. So he started escaping his room and I primed some childproof door locks. We also had to: 

  1. Remove everything but beds from the boys’ room. 
  2. Put the dresser in the closet so he didn’t empty it every day.
  3. Order closet door locks. Obviously.
  4. Take Will’s mattress off his loft bed and put it on the floor, so that we could take the ladder off and keep Daniel from climbing up there.
  5. Insist that Will not keep anything paper in his room. 

So that’s been fun. Also, no crib has resulted in NO NAPS on non-school days and UGH. Daniel gets super cranky when he’s tired. It was bad enough when he didn’t nap on the 4 days a week he’s at school during nap time. 

But! There’s more! He also learned how to climb over the gate we had around the TV/DVD player area. And work the child locks on the cabinet holding the DVD player. AND! He got tall enough to reach the ledge that goes all around the basement. The ledge that I used to set anything I wanted to keep out of his reach. *cue me crazy laugh-crying*
Of course I have photographic evidence of the destruction. 


Emptied DVD cabinet. And took a whole bunch of DVDs out of cases. Also ruined the cases.


Ate some markers during “nap time” before we completely emptied the boys’ room.


Got into the laundry room and loaded the washer with toys and DVDs. You know, from the cabinet he emptied. Thankfully he didn’t turn the water on. 

It’s been quite an experience. 

Mad hatter

Lydia loves hats. It’s pretty great. Yesterday I went to get her from her nap and she had managed to snag a knitted penguin beanie off the floor and was wearing it. (Sadly I didn’t get a picture of that.) So how about some other pictures of her in hats? Here you go.


Alright that last one is headphones, not a hat, but COME ON. Look how cute she is.

Ornamental 

The weather has finally turned cold after a never ending summer. (Seems we basically skipped fall.) I put flannel sheets on the beds today and I’m getting out all the Christmas stuff on Friday. I don’t know that I’ve ever been SO READY for the Christmas season to start. 

As always, my mom got the kids each a new ornament! We’ll bust those out on Friday too. For Kalena, a Candyland ornament, because somehow she manages to win every time. (From Hallmark)

For Will, a light up BB8. Because STAR WARS. (Disney store)

For Daniel, a talking Mater, because he has been especially fond of Mater’s Tall Tales on Netflix. He loves trucks. (Hallmark)

And for Lydia, this sweet little snowman, because it makes me think of her loving her bear. (Also Hallmark)

And I got this for myself, because BOOKS! (From Amazon)