Saturday, December 29, 2012

Changing the rooms

Today Laura and Jeff switched Laura's room to what was the office. The baby's room is now Laura's old room. Laura's room was bigger for baby furniture. Also, Laura has a playroom downstairs so she can go downstairs and play.

They started working at 8:30am and ended around 5. It snowed all day so it was a good indoor job. I never saw them work so hard. I felt bad because I did supervise Laura and did tell her where things go, I couldn't do much more.

My mom purchased a baby furniture set from Craigslist for my birthday. I found it yesterday online and my mom checked it out and paid for it. So now our task is getting it to our house.

Jeff then cleared the sidewalks, had dinner and when we put Laura to bed started to watch The Lord of the Rings series. I forgot how long of a movie it is but getting through it.

Tomorrow is baby furniture day!!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Our Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas Eve! As a child, Christmas Eve was more a frustrating day because of the anticipation of Christmas. It was also a busy day for my parents because they were preparing for our Christmas party and Christmas morning. So I was often bored that day until we got ready for Mass.

Now that I am a parent, my perspective has changed. I enjoy helping Laura anticipate Christmas. We now have a Christmas Eve party to prepare for and excitement is in the air.

This year Jeff and I were exhausted. Laura had a really rough night prior and we basically only slept 3-4 hours. She ate some unusual food that obviously did not agree with her. The poor kid woke me up shortly after midnight in tears because she was sick to her stomach.

Jeff and I worked as a team. I took care of Laura and Jeff had the unpleasant job of cleanup. That meant lots of cleaner and lots of laundry. I got Laura comfortable in the living room, told her stories, held her and reminded her to drink water.

Around 2:30am she fell into a good sleep. Jeff and I were wide awake and sat on the couch to watch our favorite television show. By four, we decided to put Laura back in bed. I also needed sleep because I had to get up early to get a glucose test.

Jeff went to bed around six because he cleaned our humidifier and shower. I got up at 7 and my attendant took me to my glucose test. I'll write more about the test in another blog.

The rest of the day we prepared for the party. Laura laid on the couch recovering but not sick at all. We debated canceling the party, but decided it wasn't the flu or virus. She stopped being sick at two in the morning so I knew all would be safe.

We went to Mass with Jeff's parents and my dad. It was so crowded. After Mass, we relaxed and enjoyed our relatives and had fun!!

Before Laura went to bed, Santa left her a gift of pajamas for herself and a baby doll. How adorable!!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Newtown CT - dec 14

Today was a sad day. In Newtown,CT a guy killed 20 children and 6 adults plus his mom. The children were in kindergarten and first grade. The teachers died protecting them. The principal and school psychologist were killed.

My thoughts immediately went to Laura. My dad and I were at the Mall when the details came out. It definitely hurt the Christmas spirit. I just wanted to go hug my daughter.

The horror of it is terrible. To think that anyone could go kill 20 kindergarten students, six staff members and his own mom is too much for a heart and spirit. I kept picturing the event, the fear in the students, the sounds and the parents.

When I heard the teachers protecting them and how, I felt like I was there. I was very impressed and touched. I hugged Laura and kissed her all night.

I find myself more patient and loving even every second with her. Life is precious. I feel terrible for the parents and families who lost people. I don't know how they do it.

Birthday and beta fish - dec 12

Today my Dad turned 64. I taught Zef today and he was tired. I have a feeling that he is catching a cold. Julie paid me. Jeff and I took Zef to Old Country Buffet for lunch before my OB appointment. He loved it the first time but the second time not so much.

Afterwards we stopped at a pet store to buy some things for our fish tank. Our fish wasn't looking so good. We had him since March but he just seemed not too good. The snail died and algae built up.

When we got home, Jeff made stuffed peppers for my dad. We had dinner, cake, and present time. When everyone left I helped Laura with her homework. After she went to bed, Jeff and I watched the concert for Hurricane Sandy.

Our fish died and Jeff ran out to get one that looked just like Jayden. Then he met his mom to get tickets for a casino.

Unfortunately, the new fish also died. Laura cried but she took it well. We are giving up on fish for awhile. We do better with our dogs and cats.

RIP our fish - dec 13

Today I had to make phone calls because I didn't receive my packet for the new payroll system for my attendants. I am on the right track but I haven't gotten it yet. I hope to have it tomorrow.

Jeff and I went to the Valley Forge casino. His Mom gave him free passes and fifteen dollars to gamble with. We were disappointed that it was not as fancy as we thought. But we enjoyed ourselves.

Afterward, we ate lunch at Wegmans. We talked about his new real estate business with his father. We went to Good Will and got a blanket for Jason. We also got a teddy bear for Laura to cheer her up because her fish died last night.

She was in an adorable mood after school. We played and watched TV. Plus we played with teddy bears and snowmen.

The Hobbit and my Saturday

Jeff and I went to see the Hobbit. It was pretty good. Some parts were slow and I dozed in some area because I'm recovering from a sinus infection. We also had breakfast with my dad,Laura and my nephew.

Laura spent the day with my dad and nephew. They enjoyed Jungle Wonder,crafting and watching Cats and Dogs. She loves her cousin.

After the movie, Jeff and I relaxed, watched tv,and napped. My sinus pain was back, but now I'm feeling good

When Laura came home, I played with her and she helped me clean the hall. I put her to bed to come out and see Jeff rearranging and cleaning our dining room. I love his drive because I have it too,I just can't always do it physically! He's busy working away as I write.

Monday, December 3, 2012

My missing voice

Living without my voice has been pretty common since October. The worst of it started the day before Thanksgiving, and it hasn't been the same since.

Every time I start to feel sorry for myself, I think of others who have cerebral palsy, autism, stroke or other disabilities that might prohibit speaking. I can totally understand the frustration and limitations.

I've always had a speech impediment. The people closest to me usually have no trouble understanding me most of the time. Of course, when I'm tired, sick, in pain, nervous or having a bad CP day my speech isn't necessarily the best.

I normally don't complain about CP, but I must admit having a speech impediment is annoying. People often assume you have no idea what you're talking about, treat you like a child, ignore you or even make fun of you. I try to speak as clearly as possible, but sometimes fall short.

Now with hardly a voice on top of my normal speech issues, life has gotten a bit more challenging. I believe Jeff liked the silence at first. What husband would not like a silent wife once in a while? But now I even think he misses my normal voice. I also miss reading to Laura and having normal conversations.

Luckily, I haven't had to miss work and managed to save up my voice to have fairly normal teaching days. I take breaks and try to rest my voice in between lessons.

Technology has helped. Texting, writing and even using speech app on my iPhone has been a big help especially with Laura.

My doctor said the issue is that I have acid reflux and post nasal drip. If I weren't pregnant, I could be on medications that would help. So until March, I just need to control it with diet and less stress.

In the meantime, I'll just continue to be patient and hopefully others will too. Come March I will have a new person to talk to!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

iWordQ word prediction for the iPad rocks

Technology has come a long way since I was a child. Like many people with cerebral palsy, technology improves my life a great deal. I am so impressed with what the iPad offers for those with physical challenges.

When I was six, I remember using a blue and gray typewriter with a blue molded key guard. I thought it was the best thing in the world. I could only use my right thumb, but I was able to get the job done.

At seven, I was given a Brother typewriter for my birthday. I wrote many stories, lists and could do more of my homework independently. I absolutely loved that thing. During the same year, we got a Commodore 64 computer. I know I'm showing my age now!

I believe when I was 9 or 10, my teacher introduced me to the memo writer. It was a small word processor that had tiny keys. It took some positioning work, but I could use it on my tray.

Fast forward to today, my husband just gave me the latest iPad for Christmas. It is amazing how much I can do on it. I can control my lights, tv, stereo and more without assistance.

I just downloaded the app for word prediction. It costs $25 but I am very impressed. It is called iWord Q, and it has increased my typing speed over fifty percent. I find it very easy to use, and highly recommend buying it.

Many word prediction software costs over $200 so this is a tremendous deal if you own an iPad. I can't imagine how much easier school would have been if I had this back then!