My kid made the front page! Above the fold!

Ok, so, not, like, single-handedly. But still.

He’s the one with the cap on backwards. *facepalm*

This program has helped him immensely. He’s so much more confident and competent with his social skills. He’s come a long way.

Gazette Online Asperger's program

So, a rabbi and a bear walk into a bar…

Today when I picked up the boys from school, Rocky got into the car very upset and told me a classmate had been calling him names. I asked him what she called him, thinking I’d hear the standard “buttmunch” or perhaps “fart knocker.” Then I took a moment to feel a little bit guilty that HunkyDory watched a tad too much Beavis & Butthead when Rocky was a toddler. I sheepishly remembered the day we pulled up the back of his t-shirt collar to the top of his head and taught him to say, “I am Cornholio!” and run around the living room in circles. Good times, good times. *blinks* Wait, what? Ah, yes.

He said, “She called me a Jew, and I’m not a Jew, I’m a Christian. I tried to tell her they’re different, but she just kept yelling over me ‘Jew Jew Jew Jew’!”

Seriously?! WTH is this kid’s parents teaching her?!

I had a talk with Rocky to make sure that we were on the same page- calling someone a Jew is not an insult but it can get you in some deep, deep trouble, etc. etc. When I got home, I sent WFGT (Wonderful Fifth Grade Teacher to the uninitiated) an email.

——————————————
I think somebody needs to have a little talk with XXXX. Rocky said she was calling him a Jew like it was an insult. 1 – Rocky is a Christian, not a Jew. 2 – Calling someone a Jew is not an insult. 3 – Jews are good people. 4 – Calling someone a Jew in a sneery voice could possibly be construed as racist and could potentially get her punched in the mouth by a less tolerant person.

Thanks.
——————————————

Was that ok, emailing the teacher, or am I ‘That Parent’? I know that I would want to know if Rocky did something like that.

A couple weeks ago, WFGT asked if it would be OK if Rocky talked to the kids in the classroom about his ADHD and AS. She thought it would help if his classmates knew what he had, and hopefully they could better understand him and be more tolerant. I said that was fine with me if it was fine with him. Today, Rocky said he and WFGT had a discussion with the class where he disclosed that he has ADHD and AS, and what that’s like for him. When I asked him how that went, he sadly said “the other kids are being even more bossy with me”.

Faced with these two incidents that were causing my child such distress, the Mama Bear in me woke up from hibernation with a craving for Little Kid and Dumplings. Hearing Rocky’s troubles makes me want to waddle into that classroom, emit a deafening, hair-raising, soul-piercing Mama Bear roar, and then make a couple of those kids my first meal after my long winter’s nap.

But I realize that I’ve got to let him learn to advocate for himself, so I suppose I’ll just go back to my cave and hit the snooze button for another six weeks.

******

5:20am this morning.
My loving husband has gotten up with me. He’s either really brave or really stupid. Let’s go with brave.
I pull what I think is a green shirt out of the closet.

Hunky: Are you gonna wear that?
Dory: Um, yeah.
Hunky: If you’re thinking of wearing green for St. Patrick’s Day, that ain’t green.
Dory: It is too green!
Hunky: It’s really more of a teal or perhaps aquamarine.
Dory: Well, it’s in the green family.
Hunky: A raccoon is in the bear family, but that doesn’t make it a bear, now, does it?
Dory: You’re just a great big girl, arncha?

******

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. Hawsum.

Awwww maaaan; leftovers again?!

So if you don’t blog for a few days, you get a post-it filled with scribble and you serve yet another piping hot bowl of Blog Stew. It ain’t much, but it’s filling.

It was an interesting weekend. Dory’s done it again. I took the last of my Wellbutrin on Friday and couldn’t find my big four month stash that came in October. We turned the house upside down all weekend looking for it. Then Hunkster called the office on Monday. Turns out I picked up the emergency ration that they gave me when they forgot to order it, and never picked up the big stash when it came in. So we picked it up yesterday and I’m back on track. How do I forget things like picking up my mind-altering pharmaceuticals?! D’oh!

Friday The Rockstar went to school medicated and came home and announced he had a very good day! Yay!!! He also said that he caught Wfgt reading my blog during small groups, so when you comment, say hi to her and thanks for being the grooviest Wfgt ever! AND also thanks again to the Intarwebb Angel, too!

Friday night we went to a CMA meeting…

Our fearless leader bravely playing
“Let’s Make a Deal” Christmas/Joy Rider style

…then out to Fifth Gear to see Strangely Familiar. Great time, but did two tequila shots and lost count of the beers, then remembered too late that it’s a bad, bad idea to try to keep up with The Kizzle. The Hunkster ended up driving us home, of course.

Saturday was spent nursing a headache in my neck and looking for my meds. My office is cleaner than it was, which is saying a lot. Over the weekend we all watched LotR 1&2 together. On the 50 inch with surround sound, just as God intended.

Elli came into heat this weekend;
Elmer better get his dancin’ humpin’ shoes on


And we have a snow day today because of this huge ice storm coming through and I hate snow days. “Mom, can I…” “Mom, will you…” “Mom, let’s…” “Mom, he won’t stop…” “Mom?” “Mom!” “Mommmm?!” mom mom mom mom mom mom mom mom mom …ad infinitum…

******


Things I never thought I would have to actually utter unto my children but found myself rolling my eyes and stating:

2. “Stop licking your brother’s pillow.”

******

I thought I’d pass on this link from Jessica which will be very interesting for anyone touched by Asperger’s Syndrome.

******

Only 14 days left until Christmas and 8 days until my birfday! I still have to find something for my nephew, and then my Christmas shopping is done. I still have to find something for my mom and The Seester, but I don’t have to worry about that until we have our Christmas in January. Here’s Elli opening one of her presents last year. I hid her present this year on the shelf in my closet and the little spaz already spied it. She’s asked and asked for me to get it down and give it to her, but she’s just gonna hafta wait like the boys.

Rip it open, and “ooooo” and “ahhhhh” over it even if you hate it. It’s that time of year.

I showed remarkable restraint. I almost kissed her full on the mouth.

Ok, my boy? It’s like he’s on an double-expresso, Vivarin, and methamphetamine cocktail. With a Red Bull chaser.

Ok, duct tape? Getting more tempting by the minute.

For example… at this very minute, and for the last half hour, instead of walking wherever he needs to go, he’s somersaulting backwards. All over the house. And talking. Nonstop. The Jack Russell Terrier of the house has told him ok, enough already, back off. Emphatically. People… he’s worn out a Jack Russell Terrier. And I’m trying to just let him be and run damage control.

But it does get better.

The School Nurse contacted me today, and the relay service didn’t start the call with Have you used relay before? to offer potential explanation to newbies. He just dumped her in the deep end. I actually had to explain to her quickly what the operator was there for. So the poor woman was so confused. And for that, i711 is going to be getting a bomb threat… strongly worded email. I gave her my address so she could end the call and take a quick time out to put a hit on operator… email me. She asked permission to contact Hawk-i and put the smackdown… light a fire under their asses… courteously request the process be expedited so Rocky can get the exorcism… his meds quicker and back to “normal”, and I use that term as loose as a two-dollar whore… a Mexican tourist’s bowel movement… Clinton’s definition of sex.

I said, “Sic ’em, girl”… “Yes, please. Thank you.”

But it gets better.

I went in around lunchtime to give him another little threat of no driver license until he’s 18… pep talk. I told him that he really needed to try hard to get a grip and that I believed in him and I knew that he could do it. And put my hand on his head and said a very quick fervent prayer. I opened my eyes, and I watched my boy take a deep breath, and I saw him visibly calm for a moment.

My mission partially accomplished, I went down to Dino’s room while the kids were at recess to give his teacher a little heads-up on the spring program fiasco earlier this year. Long story short… Teacher and Sp Ed Teacher thought it would go fine, Dino seemed completely psyched for it, he froze at the door, wouldn’t go in, *big inhale* meltdown complete with terrified sobbing, school counselor comforted me as I sobbed, “I’m so tired; why can’t I just have a normal kiiiid?” *big exhale* Oy. Wasn’t pretty. Anyway. Ok, pep talk for Rocky, check; warning the other teacher of potential meltdown, check; my work here was done.

But it gets better.

Received a little later from Wfgt today…

———-
RE: Rocky
From: Wfgt
Sent: Thu 12/06/07 1:51 PM
To: Dory

I really hope that you didn’t feel bombarded by all the emails/calls. Hopefully things are getting worked out and will smooth out soon enough.

The following is meant only as a tool we can use to gauge Rocky’s days…on a 1-5 scale (1 being productive/5 being duct tape). Yesterday Rocky shouted “fart” a few times during a lesson, I spoke with him about it so instead of saying it…he wrote fart many, many times [did I mention this woman is a genius? I never would’ve thought of that] to cover a piece of paper. (Much less distracting, if we are looking for positives). The good news is that Rocky did have a better day today with no “fart” outbursts. I attribute that to your pep talk, so THANKS! Yesterday was a 4 fart day, today was about a 2.5.

I just wanted your input b/c I really could go both ways on this. I CAN send Rocky’s work home with him but I truly don’t want to “punish” him for something that he can not control. [my love for this woman, albeit a non-lesbian sort, could potentially consume me] He did complete a few assignments today (better than yesterday) and the ones he did not, are not vital. He catches on so quickly to things that it wouldn’t be a major set back for him to have a few unproductive days. However, if you think that it would be best to keep him accountable, I can see that side too. I will do whatever you think is best. Me, I am crossing my fingers for a snow day….

Let me know what you think! Thanks again for the support and talk with Rocky!

Wfgt
———-

I.
Love.
Her.

But wait, it gets better.

Ok, what I’m about to tell you next, they don’t make a big enough thesaurus for all the words needed to adequately express my thanks. When I got home, I had an incredibly unexpected surprise. One of you amazing Intarwebb-Compadres was an answer to prayer today. One of you lovely Internets PayPal’d me $150 to get Rocky’s meds. And you don’t even know… I can’t even… I wish I could… yeah. Ok, imagine today is opposite day, and the most sparse, simple statement is actually the most elaborate, lavish, exquisitely perfect profession of gratefulness. Ok? Ready?

Thank you.

It. Gets. Better.

When we went to pick up the boys today, we went into the school so we could profess my undying adoration thanks to Wfgt and the amazing news that he would be coming to school medicated in the morning courtesy of the Angelic Tubes of the Internets. We thanked Wfgt for being straight-up and not pussyfooting or beating around the bush about the troubles. And for her incredible sense of humor. And her seemingly unending supply of kind patience with our boy. And just being awesomely cool in general. Wfgt thanked us for all our cooperation. (Um, we’re the parents, isn’t that our job?) And for our sense of humor. And for not going berzerk on her, psycho-parent style. It was a nauseatingly disgusting bloodbath of mutual syrupy admiration. I’m so thankful for a teacher that understands that you can either cry about it or laugh about it; it’s your choice.

HunkyDory’s official partyline is that yes, the meds help, but Rocky has to work hard to overcome the ADHD/Asperger’s Syndrome; pills aren’t magic or even a valid excuse to completely blow off responsibility. I have ADD and take meds too so I have that to share with him; I can tell him that Mom works hard to overcome and he can too. Some people have to work a little harder at life, and sure, that’s not fair, but life’s not fair so you might as well get used to it. He can probably recite that little lecture of mine along with me by now. So he’s going to do all the assignments he missed, but I will wait until he’s medicated to have him do it.

And now, Mitsy… The Weather.

And we’re having quite the snowstorm here. The City of Cedar Rapids has declared snow emergency, which sounds kind of scary but it just means that no one can park in the street so the plows can get through. Everybody in Cedar Rapids is closed down or canceled including both colleges. But let’s not postpone the Holiday Program! I do have to give them kudos on the whole Holiday/Christmas issue; like many other schools, they had a program about learning about many other kinds of celebrations. I’m sure you’re familiar with this, but let me just tell you something that made me raise my eyebrows. The gist of it is the children are painting all the windows of the shops downtown. Guess what shop wants the kids to paint their windows with a pretty “Closed for Ramadan” motif?

The Snack Shack.

Yikes.

But I’m oh so pleased to report that The Dinosaur did not freak out. He participated (for the most part; I’ll take what I can get) by doing the same moves that the other kids did to the music. He sang with the other kids (a little bit; again with the taking, getting). And as if that wasn’t enough, he marched (literally) up the microphone, delivered a line of the program perfectly, and marched smartly (again, literally) back to his place.

You guys, this is big. It was a good day.

Just when I think I can’t hack it anymore; when I think that just can’t take another step; when the black hole seems altogether too enticing; when I lose sight of the light at the end of the tunnel… God steps in and uses astonishingly empathetic Internets (you are my peeeepuuuull) and a super-cool teacher; He unbinds my mind so my words they flow like cleansing, cool spring water; and He softly puts his hands on each of my boys’ heads… and my eyes are stinging? And the tears aren’t sad? What is this?

Is this what happy feels like? I kind of forgot. I like it.

God bless you, my friends; He’s sure blessed me.

And then I made a sammich. It was good.

I tried to post, really, honestly, I did. But they turned out something like this:
*clears throat*
I got up. I was tired. I slept for shit. I ate a hot pocket. It was good. But hot. And a pocket. At the same time. Wow. My head still hurts. Ow.
*bows*
Someone told me that no one cares what you had for lunch (which is actually on its way from the Amazon Fairy!) so you see, I didn’t abandon you. Really, if you think about it (and not even real hard), I did you a ginormous favor. It was best to just put those posts out of their misery and move on.

And now, Jim… The Sports.

My body is trying to break the world record for Most Snot Ever Out of One Small Person. I’ve gone through more kleenex than a junior varsity cheerleader with no boobies. The Hunk, God bless ‘im, went out into the snow and sleet to get me a box of Puffs with Vicks and Lotion with Aloe to prevent what could have been a very serious partial amputation of the nose. Pretty soon, all the goop production is going to dehydrate me and I’ll have to get some IV fluids. Damn winter and its damn head colds.

And now, Mitsy… The Weather.

We’re still battling with DHS and Hawk-i, and The Rockstar is unmedicated. And? Kind of like The Tazmanian Devil. The Wonderful Fifth Grade Teacher That I Am In Love With In A Totally Non-Lesbian Way (hereafter aka WFGTTIAILWIATNLW… aw hell, how about just Wfgt) had to send me an email today re: my Rocky/Taz completely losing his brain, and, I gotta admit, I did not have a heart attack and die from this surprise.

Now before you read this email… aw, crap, wait… what if she sues me?! Wait again! I have NOTHING! Save for the lint in my pockets and some furniture that Goodwill won’t even take, a few dented vehicles, and some refrigerator items that may or may not have lethal bacteria.

And. Don’t you go dissin’ on Wfgt. Because I will totally Kick. Your. Ass. I’ve got the boots; don’t make me use them.

——————–
Subject: Rocky
Date: Wed, 5 Dec 2007 15:49:17 -0600
From: Wfgt
To: Dory

I know that it will come to no surprise to you that Rocky has been having a lot of difficulties now that he has been off his meds, and it is increasingly getting worse.

I have been cutting his assignments down since I know that focusing is so difficult. [this is clearly a woman who knows how to choose her battles] But, it has gotten to the point that he is not completing ANY of his assignments, he was unable to do his math test (even with me sitting next to him prompting), and he is very disruptive to the class.

We are trying to make adaptations and looking for solutions (any ideas!) but I was wondering how long you think it might be before Rocky is back on his meds. Also, if there is anything that we can do to help facilitate filling Rocky’s prescription let me know. I know in the past, our school nurse has taken a role in this for others.

The problem with email is I hope this isn’t misconstrued as desperate… like I will do ANYTHING… please…. help….. duct tape, etc. It really isn’t like that!

Let me know if you have any suggestions!

Thanks, Wfgt
——————–

And here is my response:

——————–
Wfgt,

Hang in there with me, please please please! We’re having such a time with DHS and Hawk-i, I can’t even begin to tell you how frustrated it makes me. I got a letter 10/28 from DHS that since Hunky got a part time job, now we have to have Hawk-i. It said we wouldn’t have to do anything, we would be cards in the mail. Well, mid-November I called (oh, and anytime I say called, it’s really a relay call which moves approximately at the speed of erosion) Hawk-i because I hadn’t gotten cards yet. The gal said, “Yeah, we called your DHS worker and told them we needed more info on 11/2 and they didn’t do it.” So I called my DHS worker and she said, “If I had gotten a message, I surely would’ve acted on it.” And both… what are they, they’re not companies… slimy squid-like monsters said that it was not their fault and there was nothing they would do. Then last Friday Hawk-i said that we would be getting the cards in the mail in 3-10 days. At one point, we bought Rocky 5 pills just to get us through until we thought the cards would be there, and that cost $43 and came out of grocery money. And stupid DHS says that we make too much money to get food assistance! Me, on unemployment, and Hunky, on a part-time job, make too much money for assistance. It boggles my mind. And we get to do it all over again (oh the joys!) because I’m about to get my last unemployment check, which changes our income level, and I guaran-friggin-tee that Hawk-i will bounce us back to DHS and sure as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, so help me, they’re going. to screw. it. up.

*blink*
*blink blink*

Anywaaay, I didn’t mean to get off on that tangent. I talked to Rocky tonight and told him that he was going to have to put some more effort forth even though he doesn’t have his pills, I know he can do better than what he’s doing, even med-less. He agreed with me. So he’s going to really try much harder. Tomorrow I’ll check with CVS and see if they can just talk to Hawk-i and get the pills without the card yet. I know he’s really very challenging and difficult, believe me; it’s literally driven me to tears at times. Do me a big, huge, fat favor. Any teacher you’ve EVER heard utter the words, “Drugs aren’t what’s best for ADHD kids; they’re for parents who need their kids sedated because they don’t want to handle them” or any variation thereof, and I want you to go get them, and bring them to your room, and watch Rocky for one hour. There will be much groaning and sobbing and gnashing of teeth, but don’t let that scare you. Because one week after he’s back on his meds, you herd them all up again, and you bring them to your room (heck, use a cattle prod, I don’t care) and you have them, again, watch Rocky for one hour. You’ll make converts of them all. It’ll be like a big ol’ revival right there in school. Make sure you take up a love offering, because it’s best to hit them up when they’re all emotional.

Damn it. Tangent again. *shakes head vigorously*

Oh, and don’t think for one second that I have never considered duct tape and a large oak tree.

Highest Regards,
Preachin’ to the choir in Cedar Rapids
——————–

There’s not many perks to being a parent. So sometimes, God gives you a teacher that gets your kid. He’s cool like that.

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude.

The wages of sin are NOT pumpkin guts.

Happy
NaBloPoMoMaNaNoNoBaNaNa
Kickoff
Day!

I love happy endings.

Yesterday had a happy ending.

The Teacher e-mailed me back and said that was just fine if I wanted to pick him up, but they also had an extra costume if I was ok with letting Dino stay. I e-mailed back that was fine with me, but I was still coming in just in case Dino might have a meltdown. I got to the school a little bit early and came into his classroom. Of course the kids were completely wired for sound; actually ricocheting of the walls like super-bounce balls.

The Teacher came up and said to me, “I offered the costume to D and he said ‘no, thank you’ but he does still want to be in the parade. I asked him what he was going to dress up as, and he said he was going to be himself.”

I said, “Great! Sounds good to me.”

The Teacher announced, “Ok, boys and girls, it’s time for us to get dressed for the parade! I’ll help the boys and The Para will help the girls.”

The Dinosaur dressed up as “Himself”

He gave D some coloring stuff to do while everyone got changed, and chaos ensued. At one point, D buried his head in his crossed hands on his desk, and I was worried we might have an impending meltdown. Loud freaks him out. But he looked like he was handling it for himself pretty well, so I left him alone to take care of his own distress. The other kids were getting changed into their costumes, yelling excitedly and running in tight circles not unlike a highly caffeinated herd of Jack Russell Terriers.

Oh, and one interesting note… one little boy dressed up as a girl. What better costume for the budding closet transsexual? Um, yikes. Of course, he got the most attention from all the other kiddies; but much to my surprise, it was fascination rather than derision. He must’ve pulled it off because he was one of the cool kids.

The Teacher had everyone line up for the parade and at the last second, D got up and joined the line, next to last place. The procession, well, proceeded. The Para showed us other moms the short cut out to the playground where the kids would end up. We walked through the gymnasium and down the fire exit to the playground.

Ok, side note? All elementary school gyms smell the same. I walked through the double doors and instantly was flooded of memories of the humiliation of getting chosen last for teams, staggering in last in races, and forged notes excusing myself from the requisite involuntary indignities that is Physical Education. I found myself wishing that I had been able to raise my kids where I grew up so I would see a full circle, bringing my sons back to where I was humiliated educated. Partially the nostalgia of returning, but also partially so I could go to parent/teacher conferences and say, “See, I turned out OK in spite of your insistence that I would never amount to anything since I was brilliant yet completely incapable of applying myself.” I had a hearing impairment and ADD to boot; and instead of an IEP, I got shamed because I could not be what they insisted I should be.

Oops. That’s a tangent I didn’t intend to go off on. Moving on.

Anyway, we got downstairs just in time to see the 2nd & 3rd graders parading and the 4th & 5th graders supervising. I heart R’s teacher. She’s so perfect for him. She came up and chatted a little and told me how well he’s been doing.

The Dinosaur marching in the parade dressed up as “Himself”.
The girl in front of him is apparently dressed as “All Red”.


The Rockstar hard at work supervising with the Cool Kids.

I spent time in both kids’ classrooms for their Halloween parties. Oh, man. The sugar. The horror. God bless all teachers everywhere for enduring Class Parties. I would have taken pics of the parties, but I was frozen in morbid fascination at the pandemonium.

At one point, I was reading over R’s last book report, and dang, my kid is good. His teacher saw what I was reading and came over and said, “I hope you understand that a lot of what he writes is not grammatically correct, but I just leave it. He writes just like he talks, he bends the rules a little. His writing has his voice, like you can hear him speaking as you’re reading his work. He’s going to be a fantastic writer, and I don’t want to squash that with red ink.”

I almost kissed her. In a totally non-lesbian way, of course.

Later, we went to the church party. As you enter the party, all kids 7th grade and under can put their name in a basket for a prize. Up front they had an eight foot by 3 foot table stacked with good prizes. Now to get the loot, you gotta go through the puppet show and the singing; ok, no problem, it actually wasn’t that bad. It was pretty loud though, so I had to take D out into the hallway for a little bit where he could watch without protectively shutting himself down. As soon as that concluded, he was absolutely fine with going back in. Next, a guy dressed up as a greenhorn calling himself “Marshal Fife” comes out with a cart with pumpkin on it. I sucked in my breath, because oh hells no, my church better not friggin’ teach my kids that the wages of sin are pumpkin guts. All was well, though, because Marshal Fife (AKA Ben, a really fantastic youth ministry helper, really funny, kids love him) teaches all the li’l chi’drens that the pumpkin is like our lives. As he dug out the guts, he explained that the guts are yucky like sin. And as he lit the candle inside and turned the pumpkin to reveal the cross carved in the pumpkin, he explained that when Jesus is in our lives, he cleans out the sin so His love can shine through us. I audibly exhaled a sigh of relief. Good thing, because I wouldn’t want to have to snap on anyone, all Christian-ly-like, of course. No one better ever tell my kids that they’re yucky inside. Leave the emotional scarring to me. I don’t need you to teach my kids right now that they’re inherently evil inside and give them a completely negative connotation of God. They’ll get enough of that later on in life. For now, let’s leave it at sin is yucky, not them. And God’s primary objective is to take care of his children, like the Heavenly Dad that he is, not like Heavenly Mean Man Just Waiting for the Opportunity to Strike You Dead with Lightning, mmmkay?

Oops. There’s another tangent. Moving on.

Finally, the kids had paid their dues in the form of barely containing their unbridled enthusiasm for their body weight in sugar, and it was time for the drawing. I had a good opportunity to teach them to speak “positivity” instead of “negativity”. As they started pulling and calling names, my kids start muttering. “Look at that big basket. I’m not gonna win. I never win anything.” etc. etc. And I said, “Now, listen, stop that. You speak that negativity, and you give it power. I want you to take that back and replace it with “I hope I win. I might win. I could win.” Of course, at first they looked at me like I had suggested they do double homework for the rest of the year. But wonder of wonders, they decided that mom had been right before and took my advice. Less than one minute later, they pulled R’s name and he ran up and got a nerf dart gun. He came back yelling, “You were right, mom, you were right!” Geez, do ya hafta sound so suprised?! D’s name didn’t get called, and his chin started to quiver, but once I reminded him that there were still an hour of games and candy downstairs in the gym, he perked right up.

We got downstairs and the boys had a blast. They played games and ate hot dogs and nachos. They won toys and candy. And I sat my butt down in the middle of the gymnasium and listened to my iPod. I was ‘home base’. About every five minutes, either boy would run back to me and I exclaimed over their loot and then they’d drop it on me and go get more. And the best part about it was it was all free. No money for tickets for stuff. Free. R kept on saying that they made out like bandits and I finally reminded him that bandits steal stuff, but the church gave them that party to bless everyone. And he tilted his head and looked at me all serious and said, “Man, mom, God is good.” And, that, ladies and gentleman, is one of the kodak moments I had kids for, and so rarely receive. I guess that’s so I appreciate it even more when it does happen.

So don’t you just love happy endings? I just love me some happy endings.

Dude, it took me a couple hours to write this. How am I gonna keep this up for the next 29 days?! What if I get a *gasp* job and have something better to do than relax in front of the computer?!

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. God’s good.

Pack yer bags, we’re goin’ ahna guilt trip!

How about some sugary cuteness with a side of adorable?
My favorite Halloween.
For once, procrastination paid off and I got these
costumes from the Disney Store for 50% off.
The Dinosaur is Woody, and The Rockstar is the ninja.
That’s my sis-in-law on the left, and my nieces and nephew.
Trick or Treating together makes it even more
fun for the kids and less painful for the adults.
The last time the boys dressed up and went trick-or-treating was ’04.
I didn’t know at the time that this was going to be our last ToT.
Would I have done anything different? No.
But I would have soaked in the cutesy yumminess more.

I have a Halloween dilemma. I shall explain.

In ’05, when I suggested forgoing ToT in 40 degree weather for a warm church party, The Dinosaur was all for it and The Rockstar was skeptical, but willing to try it. They came home with more candy then they would have gotten for ToT and they got to play a bunch of games to boot and got kool-aid, hot dogs, and popcorn. And I was Mom of the Week. No costumes were purchased. Neither boy cared at all.

So in ’06, I didn’t even have to cajole them into the car. They were in the back seat waiting impatiently, and honking when their dad and I didn’t come out of the house quite fast enough. Rocky was a 4th grader who didn’t parade in a costume at school, and Dino’s school didn’t parade, period. No costumes were purchased. Neither boy cared at all.

This year, I again gave them the choice of ToT vs. Church Party, and I might as well have asked them would they like pepperoni or snails on their pizza. Duuuhhhh, Mom. Much eye rolling from them and apologizing from me ensued. So sorry, a thousand pardons, where was my head, etc. No costumes have been purchased. It remains to be seen if either boy cares at all.

This year, D is at R’s school now, and 2nd & 3rd graders wear costumes and parade the halls while the 4th & 5th graders watch. Now, the only reason I would have to buy D a costume this year is for that 20 minute parade. And I just couldn’t justify spending $20 for a 20 minutes. So I talked to D about it, and he said he didn’t care if he paraded or not. But. I’m worried that at the last minute, D will have one of his meltdowns because he wants to parade in a costume, and it won’t matter to him if I try to explain that I offered the choice earlier. Very often, even though we give him a choice and he gives us an answer, it doesn’t quite sink in until he’s actually presented with the situation. And it very well could go the other way– a meltdown because he’s terrified to put on a costume and parade around with his friends. Too much of a breakdown in his routine. (I have another good story about what happened when I tried to change Dino’s routine at school once, but NaBloPoMo is coming, and I can save it for that.) We just never know what will happen until he is actually presented with the situation. And just to let you know, the meltdown is not a temper tantrum. He’s not mad, kicking and screaming. He’s terrified and sobbing. Much harder on a Mom’s heart.

So this morning I e-mailed his teacher and told him I’d pick up D early right before the kids got their costumes on. I explained my reason to him. I haven’t gotten a response. But I’m so worried about what his teacher is going to think of me. I know I shouldn’t, but I do. Will D’s teacher think I am a mean, cheap-ass wench who is going to scar her child for life? Will D have a meltdown and prove I am indeed a mean, cheap-ass wench who is going to scar her child for life? Why do I give a rip? These are the questions that agonize me.

The Hunkman is showing off his new toy on his page. Go see!

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. And I sure hope you raid your children’s Halloween candy after they go to bed just like HunkyDory does.