November 20, 2018

The Resident Chef


Ane had to cook a meal – and be graded on it by a parent, who also had to document her actually doing the cooking in photos – for her Food & Nutrition class.  She’s done this once before in this semester, but this time, she had to pick cooking techniques that she hadn’t used before.  We found a recipe for chicken parmigiana that had dredging and shallow frying on the list – two of those techniques on the list!  Perfect!

On the up side, Ane got to take her aggression out on some chicken.

Dinner turned out really well – it was a Pioneer Woman recipe, so how could it be terrible? – and the boys actually liked it!

I’m thinking this could be a new favorite around here!

November 19, 2018

Happy Place


This time of year, I often get asked, “What does Thumper want for Christmas?”

Other than unlimited use of an iPad or a desktop, YouTube, and wi-fi, not much.

He’s pretty darn happy with his favorite YouTube videos – mostly orchestras playing soundtracks, his favorite movies’ opening and closing credits, and the 20th Century Fox fanfare on repeat.  What, you thought that just because he fell in love with Veggie Tales Silly Songs last month that he’d outgrown his favorite 23 seconds of music?  Oh nooooooooo.  He always returns to that fanfare.

Still, it’s nice that his tastes have broadened just ever so slightly.

November 16, 2018

Flashback Friday


Hard as it is to believe, it has been a full year since Tad’s beloved art teacher died.

He has not forgotten her, but the grief he once felt so overwhelmingly has receded.  He now talks about her with a note of wistfulness, and often says, “She would be proud of me.”

I miss her quite a lot.  I was talking with H, Tad’s BCBA just this week, about how art classes were going.  He is doing very well in his new class, but I was hoping that he would be able to be a “helper”/volunteer in his old class.  It hasn’t worked out in the way I had hoped, and H and I have had to scale back our expectations.  But in recounting the developments with H, I sighed heavily and said, “If Teacher was still here, this wouldn’t be a problem.  She knew exactly how to handle him and would have understood what we were hoping for.”

Our last conversation was just a few days before her stroke.  She had messaged me via Facebook to tell me that she’d felt that she’d been too strict with Tad at the last art lesson.  She had called him out on some petty whining he was doing, and she felt that she had been too hard on him.  I reassured her that sometimes, he needed someone to be hard on him, and that he hadn’t mentioned being upset or anything, so whatever she had said clearly wasn’t bothering him.

“You know that I love him, right?” she messaged me.

“Yes, I do, but more importantly, HE knows you love him.” I messaged back.

I am so grateful that our last conversation contained that message.

And I am grateful that her memory is a blessing to Tad.

November 15, 2018

Banquets and Letters


The swim team had their end-of-season banquet, and Ane learned that… she lettered!!!

The senior team captains also gave her “The Butterfly” award because it’s her favorite stroke, plus she’s a social butterfly.  She also earned the academic recognition certificate (for maintaining a 3.5 GPA all season long), and her team voted her “Most Inspirational.”

I think she now wants a letterman’s jacket or something.

Pretty big stuff for her freshman year of high school!