I'm not ready to say good bye

While this blog is mainly about being a mom to my son. I write this post nearing the end of my mom's life. She was a confident strong minded woman who was also caring and nurturing when we were children.  As we grew up, like her, I became a confident strong minded woman and the problem with this is we often butted heads and a small rift between us grew bigger and bigger until our relationship was torn apart and we didn't speak for 8 long years. We were both stubborn and stupid.  I miss and regret those 8 years without her.  Why couldn't we agree to disagree.  Now I've been a mom for the past three years and I need her.  She is in hospice care and not expected to live much longer.  I have a flight to see her a week from Saturday and we were told, she may not be here when that visit comes to pass.  I'm not ready for this just yet...

Learning & Rewards

One of the ways, I keep my son focused and determined to complete his work for the day is a reward system.  He enjoys doing the activities I give him but there are some mornings when he would rather be bouncing around the house instead of sitting at his desk during school work time.  We do stickers for sleeping in his big boy bed and than a night out at Chuck E Cheese when he completes the chart, so I wanted to do something a little different.

Din is a gamer.  Whether it be a board game or on the Wii, he loves playing games. His latest phase, is playing New Super Mario Bros on the Wii.  If we let him, he would play all day long.  I did let him play for quite a bit after the holidays and when he was sick but now it's time to curb the play time and get him back into learning, dancing, playing etc.

For every worksheet (back & front) that he completes CORRECTLY (or at least tries), he gets 5 beads into his "Mario Container".  There have been times, to get through the work, he just doesn't care or acts silly and those times, he understands, he will get nothing.  I never do more than a half hour of school work at a time, because he is young and I know he gets burned out easily.  It's a lot of work focusing. I get that.

This Mario plan has been working beautifully!  Every bead is worth 1 minutes.  This morning, I had 6 sheets for him to complete (back and front) so 12 activities.  In the end, we sat together while he counted out 5 beads for each sheet.  We started the Mario plan 3 days ago.  Since then he has learned that 5 + 5 = 10.  He has learned that the number after 29 is 30 and not twenty ten.  He has learned that the number after 39 is 40 and not forty ten.  In fact, he has learned to count all the way up to 76!  He is getting fine motor skills picking up and counting these beads. He is more excited about learning and earning more beads. 

Another thing which he has learned and has really surprised me is he has learned to "bank" his time.  One night, while I was getting ready to make dinner, I told him he had 20 Mario minutes he could use while I got dinner on the table.  He actually told me, he was going to go play his drums and save those minutes until tomorrow morning!!

He isn't asking for Mario all day constantly like he did before we started this plan.  He knows he has to earn the time.  I have also given him Mario minutes when he cleans up his room and/or for any other exceptional good behavior. 

Like all the plans we try, this plan might not work next month, but it works for us now.  :)

Stitches

Ugh, my little guy Din was using the arm rests of two chairs, swinging in between them when his hands slipped and he landed his chin directly on the corner of a metal stair.  I looked at it and immediately thought 'Stitches'.  We went to the doctors. Because he is only three, Dr. L, didn't want to use a shot to numb the area so he used a topical lotion.  It was about noon time, Din was tired from running around at gym class that morning and then overstimulated with the activities of having to go to the doctors for a boo boo that he had no idea why there was so much fuss over.  Every other time he has gotten a boo boo, we've kissed it and/or put a bag of frozen peas on it.  He had no idea why we were at the doctors and why did everyone keep telling him to lay down.

He laid down while we waited for the numbing topical to do its stuff.  He was very restless so I read him some books to try to occupy him.  Twenty minutes later, Dr L and a nurse came in to begin the suture procedure.  Dr L asked if I was going to be okay watching this.  "Sure" I told him.  Least that's what I thought!  Dr L started to put the needle on Dylan's lip to begin the first stitch.  Din who usually has a high tolerance for pain, immediately started wailing "It Hoorts!" in his little boy voice over and over again.  It broke my heart.  I wanted to grab the doctor and tell him to 'Stop hurting my baby!'  Of course I didn't but every time, Dr L, stuck the needle into his lip, he would let out an even bigger cry.  I felt a wave of nausea had to let go of my baby's hand even though he was calling out to me.  I thought I was going to faint, I couldn't stand to listen to him cry.  Two nurses had to run in and get ME a drink of water and a sugary Popsicle to raise my blood sugar back up.  Amazingly, once they were done with Din, my faintness went away as well.

I can't believe what an ordeal it was watching Din get stitches. Now, a few hours later, he is seemingly fine and I'm still trying to get over the whole thing!

Lesson Plan

Colds have been all around us and I finally they are diminishing. Colds like to slowly creep into your life and then even more slowly creep out.  Every day we are feeling a little better.  We haven't been doing much schooling since we've gotten our colds and it's time to get back into it.  Colds are energy zappers and I'm trying to find the energy right now to get together today's lesson plan.  We've been working on writing the letters K, M and W and I think we'll continue with that this week.  It's also the week before Valentine Day's so we'll be working on some special Valentine day fun as well.