Thursday, September 30, 2010

Keepin' It Real

Many people think I am neat and organized.  Boy do I have them fooled.  I strive to be organized, but I am not.  I am a mess.  My house would be a mess if I was not married to a very neat person.  He is neat in so many ways (I love you Hon!)

In the interest of "Keepin' It Real" on this blog, this is what my house looks like most of the time.  This is what it looks like if I don't know you are coming over, because if I know someone is coming over I run around like a crazy person and clean it up.  On a regular day to day basis, this is my house.

The landing on the stairs

The top of the stairs.

Haley's Room

Our bedroom, my side of the bed.

Our bedroom, Haley's Dad's side of the bed.

Of course the arrangement of these toys varies on a minute by minute basis, notice that the same toys are in each picture.  I didn't take pictures downstairs, I am sure you can use your imagination.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Daylight DVD

Haley finally earned enough Daylight Dollars to get her Daylight DVD.  The last five dollars were a long time coming.  She just didn't seem convinced that she needed to do the work to earn them.  After much coaxing she did.

She had to wait a few days for the DVD to arrive.  I was surprised that she didn't drive me crazy about it.  She knew she had earned enough and she knew she had to wait.  She was very patient.

The DVD arrived yesterday, but we didn't get the mail until today.

She brought me the package and we opened it together.  She was very excited to finally have it.  Her Big Sis was watching a program on TV so I told her to go upstairs and ask her Dad to put it on the laptop.

I was distracted and had kind of forgotten about her.  Pretty soon I heard constant chatter coming from upstairs.  "Daylight. DVD. Loud. Hot." and a lot of grunting (I don't know what else to call it) she is talking, I am sure, but it is not words that we can understand.  She is very excited.  I even hear a "whistle blowing" from time to time.

I imagine that this will be the DVD of choice for quite a while.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Where Did She Get That?

Apparently Haley's stubborn side is showing at school.  I think it is kind of early in the year for that.

I suggested to her new teacher that she use the same form that Haley has used for the last two years.  I explained the form on this post. Those forms let the school know what she does at home and they let me know what is going on at school.  Without them all I would know is that school is fun.

The paper that she brought home tonight said that she was working on a worksheet that called for using a red crayon, but that she refused.  She wanted to use a green crayon.  She did not want to use red.  They were able to finally get her to use red, but I can imagine that they really had to work with her.  I know she can be very stubborn.

I wonder where she got that.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Nice Surprise

We had visitors on Sunday.  Haley's Grandpa and Grandma and her cousin were traveling for the last week and they stopped by our house on their way home.

It was nice that we had seen them not too long ago, Haley was not shy like she usually is.  She gave everyone hugs when they got here and then went up to her room to bring down her paper about the 844 and her toys one by one.

Haley slept in our room in a sleeping bag so that Grandma's cousin could sleep in her bed.  She didn't seem to mind climbing in the sleeping bag, I think she thought it was fun.  I started our little routine of saying "I. Love. You. See. You. Tomorrow."  Haley said something, but it wasn't tomorrow.  I said it again and she said the same thing.  I couldn't figure out what she was doing.  I said it a third time and then I understood her.  She said "Chelsea."  She needed her horse.  I ran and got her horse and she said "Thank you."

She did get up a couple of times in the night.  I don't know if she was too warm in the sleeping bag or she was just confused when she wok up, but I just kept putting her back in the sleeping bag. 

The school was scheduled to start two hours early so we had some time to continue our visit before everyone had to go.

It was nice to have Grandma and Grandpa visit, I hope that we can see them again soon.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dad. Haley. 844.

Last night my husband surprised Haley and took her to see a visiting steam engine, the Union Pacific 844. 

He didn't tell her what they were doing.  She usually likes to "go" it doesn't really matter where.  When they got to where the steam engine was parked they could just see the top of it.  He asked her what she saw and she said "844."

They got to go right up to it.  It is in town this week as part of the "Portland Rose" tour.  The engine was parked next to a parking lot and they even had the gift shop open.

When she got home she came running in to the living room to find me.  She said "844!"  She showed me the paper that she got with information about the engine and the business card she got with the Union Pacific logo on it.  She was so excited, her cheeks were bright red.

She could not calm down.  Her Dad showed us these pictures on this camera and then when upstairs to upload all of the pictures that he had taken.  Haley would go upstairs and see what he was doing and then come back down and tell me more about her adventure.  This went on all night long, up and down and back up again.

This morning she woke up and immediately got her paper and started telling me all over again.

"Dad. Haley. 844.  Steam.  Smoke.  Hot.  Smells good.  Big.  Big wheels."

She wanted to put her paper in her backpack.  I told her that she could share it with her friends at school.  She focused on the word "share." 

She used to get to take something to school every Friday that she could share.  They had sharing time where each kid was the center of attention.  They could bring out whatever they had brought and talk about it, then the other kids would raise their hands and ask questions or make a comment.  Haley loved sharing time.  She was ready every Friday with something to share.  That was in grade school.  She hasn't had sharing time in middle school .  I told her that she could share the paper with her one-on-one helper and with Miss D, but that she wouldn't have a real sharing time.

I don't know if she understood me and I don't know what will happen when she gets to school, but I hope she gets to share that paper with someone or I think she just might burst!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

So Far So Good

I am not quite used to the back to school routine yet.

Haley seems to be getting along swimmingly, I have seen her yawning quite a bit lately though.

I had to wake her up both yesterday and today.  She is also eating her breakfast and dinner really well.  She obviously is not getting to snack every fifteen minutes like she does at home.

Haley is in PE this year.  I bought her a uniform yesterday.  She needs her one-on-one helper to help her get in and out of her uniform.  That will be interesting for her.

I still don't get much out of her when she gets home.  I ask her how school was and she says "Fun."

Friday, September 10, 2010

Ready. Set. Go.

The first day of school seemed to be a success.  The bus driver had called me a week before and told me that she would be there at 8:40 to pick Haley up.  She was there and she was off.  It was nice to have a quiet house for a change.  I didn't have to get up every fifteen minutes to make her a snack.  I actually had time to do what I needed to do.  I was surprised numerous times throughout the day that I had still more time.  It was great.  She came home about the time that the bus driver anticipated and she said that school was "Fun."

The next morning we were following the same routine, eating our breakfast, when the phone rang.  It was the school.  Haley's bus would be there at 8:10 because of some scheduling changes.  I asked if this was just for today or if it would be the normal time.  It will be the normal time.  So I hung up and quickly got Haley dressed and ready.  We made it, but just barely. 

Haley will now be the first one picked up in the morning and the last one off the bus at the end of the day.  Good thing she likes the bus.

I basically gained an hour.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Eighth Grade

Wednesday was the first day of school.  Haley is in the eighth grade this year.  She is still going to the same school that she went to last year, but she has a new teacher. 

She has a new bus driver too.  We waited for the bus in the garage because it was raining.

She had her favorite CD all ready to go.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I Couldn't Resist

Heather is the cow that lives behind Haley's Grandma and Grandpa's house.  Haley loves Heather.

Haley can never get very close to Heather.  First there is that electric fence in the way, then there are those horns, there is also the fact that Heather is just not very friendly.  Heather only likes you if you have food in your hand for her.

When we went to the feed store to look for Schleich animals we were really hoping to find a Heather.  We didn't.  We ended up with a different kind of cow.  She was a cream color and she didn't have the long hair that Heather has, but she did have horns. 

Haley wasn't too concerned.  She was a cow so she name her Heather. 

Well, I tend to be picky. 

Call it perfectionism. 

I thought Heather should look like Heather so I went for a search online, and look what I found.

I found Heather.

So now Haley has a Heather that she can touch,

...and hold,

...and love.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Was This a Good Idea?

The Daylight Dollar program is having some problems.  Haley is not quite as patient for her DVD as she was for her T-shirt.  We have had a couple of melt-downs.

Haley wants her $20 now.  She is not liking the slow process of earning her dollars one at a time.

I usually couch my requests with "Haley, do you want to earn a Daylight dollar?"  Haley will answer "Yeah," and then I ask her to come over and pick up her toys, put away her videos, put away the dishes or take out the recycling.

Her Dad has the tendency to say "Haley, come and empty the dishwasher." to which there is no reply.  Or he says "Haley, do you want to empty the dishwasher?" to which she replies "No."

We have had a couple of incidents where Haley comes over under duress and then starts throwing the plastic into the drawer rather than putting it in the way it belongs.  Her Dad will tell her that she doesn't get her dollar if she does it wrong.  That is what causes the meltdowns.

I figure if she doesn't want to do the job that's fine, she won't get her dollar.  I don't make a big deal out of it. 

It seems that Dad is more interested in the job getting done.

Tonight when Haley didn't want to come over and put away the dishes; he put them away.  I didn't realize that.  I asked her if she wanted her dollar and she did.  When she got over to the dishwasher it was empty.  I had to come up with a plan B quickly.  The question I had asked her of course was "Do you want to earn a Daylight Dollar?"  The answer had been "Yeah."

I asked her to set the table, which is her sister's job.

Friday, September 3, 2010

A New Teacher

Haley met her new teacher last night.  The school had an ice cream social last night and when we got there Haley beelined for her class.  She was the first student to arrive.  She saw her name tag on the table and pointed to it.  Her new teacher, Miss D, came out and told her that she could choose a hook for her coat.  Her name tag had Velcro on the back of it, so she put it above the hook that she wanted.  Then we went into the classroom.

Everything was different.  Miss D asked her what she thought of the classroom.  Haley really scoped it out, she walked all the way around looking at everything.  The teacher asked her if she thought anything was missing or if she would change anything.  Haley didn't answer.  I was kind of expecting her to say that there were things missing, but when Haley is at school she is quiet.

Haley found her name tag inside the classroom and was able to pick her own desk too.  We kind of let her take her time and really check things out as some of her other classmates came in and talked to the teacher.  She recognized her classmates and when we asked her to say "Hi" to them or if one of them said "Hi" to her she would wave.  She was still very quiet.

We tried to explain to the teacher that she was not so quiet at home, but she probably will never hear the kinds of things she says at home.  I don't really know why that is, but I do think she is shy.  She also has a tendency to act a certain way in similar situations.

We found out that all of the aides she had last year will still be in the classroom so Miss D is the only new person Haley will need to get to know.  I hope that makes the transition easier.  Haley loves school and I know she will have a great year.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Daylight Shirt

When we got home from Montana it didn't take Haley long to remember that she wanted to earn money for her Daylight shirt.  She went right over to the refrigerator and started counting.  She had four more dollars to go.

In the morning she saw her bag of videos that she had taken to Grandma's house sitting by the TV.  She pointed at it.  I said "Are you going to put those away for a Daylight Dollar?"  She said "Go away."  I knew that meant that she would, it didn't take her long and she had them put away and she handed me the bag.

She helped me load the dishwasher and then she helped her Big Sis take out the recycling.  That is working out really well, Big Sis likes to help her earn her Daylight Dollars so we don't have to hound her to take out the recycling.

She was down to needing one Daylight Dollar.

Yesterday she was in no mood to do any chores for me.  I didn't push it.  I gave her the opportunity a couple of times, but if she didn't want to do it I just let it go.  It was kind of late in the day when she finally decided that she would empty the dishwasher (she puts away the silverware and the plastic cups.)  We went over to the refrigerator and crossed off the last dollar.

While she was celebrating I ram upstairs and got fifteen ones out of my purse.  I came back down and counted them into her hand.  She helped me count.  Then I told her to show her money to her sister while I got the package that had arrived in the mail while we were in Montana.  I had ordered the shirt before we left so I she would have instant gratification.

She came back to me and I showed her the package.  I asked her to count out the fifteen dollars into my hand and then I handed her the package.  She was so excited.  We held the shirt up to her and we talked about it.  We even went into the downstairs bathroom  and turned off the light so that she could see that it glows in the dark.  I don't think she cares about that.

I was going to throw the package away when I noticed that there was a new catalog in it.  She likes the new catalog. 

She has already figured out what she wants next.  She has her eye on a DVD which is twenty dollars.  That should take just a little longer to earn, but I think she has the concept now. 

She never got anxious about the wait for her shirt and actually she didn't even question the fact that she would get it.  She really got into the process of earning it.  It has been really fun for all of us.  Who knew?


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