Saturday, January 14, 2012

Exercising our Parental Control or the most exciting post ever (insert sarcasm)

I'm trying to figure out the parental controls on Verizon Fios because I'm not at all happy with Noah's television viewing choices. I could go on a rant about Disney but I don't think I need to, because if you have kids and cable you probably already know the crap "tween" shows they are putting out.

Since Noah has an inability to filter out the unreasonable from the reasonable the "humor" in those shows, which I find highly NOT funny most of the time, is also highly inappropriate for Noah.

Except that there are a few shows I'm OK with, and kind of enjoy. Wizards of Waverly place anyone? Phineas and Ferb?

We blocked Disney XD several months ago, but that wasn't a perfect answer because there were still shows on the regular Disney channel I didn't like. Plus he finds other stuff on other channels. And then Rich changed out the DVR and all my settings disappeared a few months ago.

I know some of you are asking yourself why I don't just forbid him to watch those shows. And considering he requires near 100% supervision which I find impossible to provide I know what he is watching most of the time. The problem is that telling him he can't watch something always turns into a fight, and sometimes most of the time I'm just not up to that fight, because 9 times out of 10 it escalates to a major melt down mostly his. But if I make the television the one saying "no" it rarely results in more than a grumble from him.

This week during one of the few hours I was awake (sick, again, ughh) and on the couch I decided to figure out the channel ratings.

I had to play with them some to figure out how to block the shows I don't want him to see, but ended up setting the limit to Y7, which means the shows are appropriate for everyone 7 and older.

So now it seems to be blocking out the shows I don't want, and it takes the pressure off mean mommy.

But now Rich and I can't watch anything without having to put a code into the remote. And that is kind of a pain in the ass. I'm not sure how long Rich is going to be able to take it until he reaches his frustration limit. Like today during a playoff game when the channel shut off at 8pm because the rating automatically changed from "general" to "PG" and he had to fumble for the remote and enter the code. Or how long it takes before Noah realizes the code and we have to reset it. (Or how many shows are going to get saved on the DVR with the title "adult title" so we look like all we watch is p0rn.)

Wow, this was an exciting post.


Monday, January 09, 2012

Dudes! We went to a Dude Ranch! Rocking Horse Ranch to be exact.

A couple months ago I was chatting on Facebook with my friend Laurie from Adopting Special Needs and she mentioned they were going to spend a couple days at Rocking Horse Ranch in Highland, NY. 

I said that sounded like fun and that I was sure they would have a great time. Well, she said we will, and it would be even better if you came too. I was all, "oh yeah, but we can't afford a trip right now, and I hate traveling with the boys, and Noah would miss school, and oh, I don't know. What if Noah rages and I lose my sanity completely."

Well, Laurie gave me a cyber shake and said something along the line of "yeah, and? You won't be alone, I'll be here."

So I talked to Rich and he thought it sounded like a great idea. RHR runs a half-price special the week before Christmas, so it was somewhat affordable. So Rich booked the room and I pretended we weren't really going.

But then something changed (I need to update you on that soon) and I was feeling better, and it started to sound doable.

And we did!

The week before Christmas we spent two nights/three days with Laurie and her family at RHR. The kids had a ball!

Laurie's daughter GB is the same age as Noah and has very similar challenges. Kiel is two years younger than Hope, Laurie's youngest.

There wasn't any natural snow yet, unfortunately, but the snow maker was blowing away and pumping it out, so there was more than enough for us to go tubing. No skiing unfortunately.

All the kids loved it! 

Noah and GB shared a few rides in the double tube.

 While Rich and Kiel went together.
I was taking the pictures here, but took plenty of rides myself, with Kiel and alone. 
So much fun!

I don't think any of the kids stopped smiling the entire time they were on the slope.

I love this picture of Hope; she looks so happy with that smile.

Here Noah and Kiel are kicking back tee pee style.

The second favorite place was the pool with its indoor water slide.

They spent hours in the pool.

So did Daddy!

Noah's third favorite part was the bungee jumping, where he could bounce and flip as much as he wanted. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures of that. :( 

RHR is a dude ranch, so of course there was horse back riding.

Rich and Noah went on a trail ride. Rich had the "crazy" horse. Unfortunately, no one told him until after the ride was over.  Kiel wasn't old enough so I stayed back with him

so he could do this!

Of course since it was a Dude Ranch, dudes, the boys had to have cowboy hats!

Kiel didn't want to take his off.

Not for the pool.

Not for bed. And yes, apparently cowboys do wear their boots to bed.

Nope, he wasn't taking it off for anything.

Kiel on THE Rocking Horse of Rocking Horse Ranch.

We had a great time. I'm very glad we did it. It was wonderful being with Laurie and her family, although we never did seem to have enough time to talk together. Guess we'll make up for it in Orlando in March.

We loved it so much that both families booked for the week before Christmas 2012!


Sunday, January 08, 2012

A Letter from a Parent: Facing the Challenge of Childhood Trauma

This is long, but powerful.

I know that Noah has more going on with him than just attachment disorder. In fact, the new psych won't even acknowledge that it is part of him. It doesn't matter though, because I'm the expert on Noah, and I know with every fiber of my being that attachment and early trauma is part of what makes Noah  who he is

If you are family or friend, or have followed our journey on here, please take the time and listen to this.



Thursday, January 05, 2012

That day I thought my head was exploding. Or alternate title: my first post of 2012 and I'm writing about this?

Warning: If you are related to me (or Rich), work with me, do karate with me, or know me personally in any other way you need to click that X up in the top right corner of your screen and come back another day.


This is not the blog post for you.

No really, I'm serious.

I will know if you don't, especially if you can't look me in the eyes tomorrow!


Okay, now that everyone I know IRL has moved on I feel the need to share something, because I'd rather hear from the Internets if I'm going to die that what happened is completely normal than ask a real medical professional.

First, let me preface this by saying that what I was doing is a completely normal activity and I know you all do it too. And if you don't, you should be! If you need help figuring out how to do it you can go back and read here, here, here and here.

It was a particularly stressful day and I needed a little release, but without all the extra work mess time...oh hell, I just wasn't feeling particularly friendly right then and needed some time alone with Old Faithful on the bus.

So I'm cruising along on the bus and the pace is picking up nicely, when BAM, all of a sudden out of fucking nowhere the bus crashed and my head exploded.

Well, obviously it didn't really explode, because I wouldn't be writing this if there were pieces of a bus brain matter on the bedroom wall.

But if felt like it was exploding. The pain was horrific. Intense. Like slam your head against a concrete wall INTENSE.

It felt like it lasted forever, but I guess it was only a minute or two. I think I moaned and rolled around on the bed for a bit, (and not in a good "moan and roll around on the bed" way). I seriously thought I was having a stroke.

The intense pain abated after a few minutes, but I still had a migraine level headache for a couple hours, and an under the surface headache for another day and a half.

And no, I did NOT reach my destination*. Way to add insult to injury, huh?

So peeps, what the hell happened? Has that ever happened to you? Are my bus riding days over?

*I told Rich about it the next day, and his first question was "well, did you at least finish?"