Saturday, January 23, 2010

Project Caity Day 1

Today I went to see a psychologist to talk about Caity's behavior with me. It was getting to the point where I just couldn't take it anymore. I don't want to take her anywhere for fear that she's going to have a meltdown, I find myself giving in to more things because I don't want to deal with a meltdown, etc. Plus, Luke is having symptoms of anxiety that I think has to do with Caity's behavior. He freaks out when she runs away in a store, when she unbuckles in the car, when she doesn't listen.

So, the psychologist pretty much confirmed a lot of what I already knew, but she gave me some tips of things to do. She told me that what I was doing was correct, that Caity is just very stubborn, strong-willed, she will do whatever it takes to be in control. She needs A LOT of positive reinforcement and I need to change all of what I say to Caity to positive things rather than negative things. One suggestion was to get something that I can carry around WITH me that I can give out/collect for Caity when she does good things and when she collect a certain number, she gets a reward of something she really likes. So, I stopped at Michael's and got a big container of those foam stickers and small plastic bags. When she collects maybe 5, to start with, she can have the stickers, as well as a treat. For now it will be candy hearts. Also, when she's on the verge of starting a tantrum, I can count to 3 and tell her she can have a sticker in her bag if she stops before I get to 3. When she's having a tantrum, I should take her from wherever she is. If she's biting or hitting, I need to restrain her.

I do feel better that I've been doing the right things. It just sucks that Caity does this to only me. I guess I'm glad that she doesn't do this to her teachers or any other adults. That would make things a lot harder.

Luke had a hockey game this morning. He was goalie and the team they played was A LOT better than their team. Luke's team got killed. I felt soooooooooooooo bad for Luke -- his team did not help him out by playing defense at all. I thought for sure he would take it hard, but he didn't, thankfully. They have another game tomorrow. Hopefully it will go better.

Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11

As with most people, I clearly remember where I was on September 11, 2001. It was my first day back to work after my honeymoon -- I was excited to show everyone pictures from our wedding, etc., but that was very short-lived. At first, I didn't really "get" the magnitude of what was happening. Another girl from work and I were going to go to her house at lunch to watch the news. My boss said we could leave if we wanted to, but I figured with just missing over a week of work for my wedding, I probably shouldn't take another day off. But, a little while later, one of the VP's sent everyone home, since I was working in a 20 floor building. Who knew what else could've happened that day. I spent the rest of the afternoon at that girl's house, watching everything unfold. Wow.

Since then, my husband has become a volunteer firefighter, and I have a new appreciation for everything that happened that day. Those firefighters had NO IDEA what they were getting themselves into, just that there was a big fire and people to save. NYC firefighters have seen bigger fires than the Saukville firefighters, but knowing firefighters now, that's what they live for, the big fires. I'm sure they had no thoughts, whatsoever, that they might die that day, even entering that building. And all the innocent people in those buildings and airplanes, I do have some peace that the majority of them went quickly and didn't suffer.

It's days like this that make me more thankful than ever for my healthy family and friends all around me. My problems seem miniscule compared to that day.

If you know any firefighters, thank them for all they's more than you might think.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


Wow, we've been busy. Luke started 1st grade yesterday -- he was pretty excited. He ran to the bus, not even stopping to say goodbye to us!! Pretty funny. We learned last night that he will be bringing home a book every night to read with us. Last night he brought home "Ginger the Kitten". There sure were a lot of words! I was just glad he didn't ask me what "teats" were!!! He told us there was another Luke in his class, but he's mean.

This past weekend G and I went to the Jimmy Buffett concert at Alpine Valley - it was a lot of fun. There was probably a group of about 15 of us. Unfortunately the weather wasn't the best, but it didn't matter.

G and I also celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary yesterday. We went out to lunch alone yesterday and then I made Chicken Spaghetti last night, which was good. We got the kids to bed around 8:30, got in bed with some wine and started watching "Rescue Me". 5 minutes into it, there was a fire call. What timing. He never got home until about 11:30, and I was sound asleep.

2 weekends we went to MI to see G's mom. She hasn't seen Caity in almost 2 years and Luke in over a year. The kids were pretty freaked out about all her bandages and hole in her throat. she's decided not to do chemo or radiation, she will only continue with the speech therapy and that's it. All we can do now is respect her decision, even if we don't agree with it.

I also took Caity to the allergist a couple weeks ago to confirm what I suspected -- a cat allergy. Sure enough....out of the 15 things they tested her for, the cat allergy was the worst. She's also allergic to pollen, grass, trees, etc. -- all the seasonal allergens. I've never noticed her having an issue with that, though.

I'm leaving tomorrow night for a weekend up in Houghton, I can't wait!!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Mom - I'm never going to like you again....

Words I just heard from Luke. He's currently in a time-out for not listening, got out and went right back in for not listening again. And I thought he was the easy one.

I carted Luke around to 3 birthday parties and the Brewers game this weekend. He got to do a lot of fun things that apparently he forgot about.

We're thinking about making a quick trip to MI this weekend to see Grandma Farthing -- she's having a hard time accepting that she actually needs chemo and radiation after they told her that they "got" all the cancer. Now she thinks that the radiation will cause more cancer. I guess she asked Kathy to tell Gary that she wanted to see him and the kids. Our thought is that she thinks that she's dying and wants to see us all one last time. She hasn't seen the kids in almost 2 years, so we're due.

I'm starting the Flat Belly Diet tomorrow, so I'm having a frozen pizza and beer tonight and then maybe pure sugar later.


Less than three more weeks until the AGD reunion up in Houghton, I CAN'T WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!

I think I'm going to make an appt. at the allergist for Caity -- she's still sniffling, rubbing her eyes & nose, since we got the cat. I think it's obvious she's allergic, but I guess I want proof.... And, I'm guessing the drainage, etc. caused the strep throat, from just sitting in there. But, I could be wrong, since I'm no doctor!!

That's all my random thoughts for tonight....!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Really? This is my life??

That's what I was thinking last night. G had fire practice, so it was me and the kids, yet again. I had to register Luke for hockey, so we went and did that. Got McDonald's on the way, kids got slushies and ring pops at the ice rink, so things were good so far. Then went to CVS for school supplies, since I have to register Luke for 1st grade tomorrow and drop off all the school supplies when I register. I let the kids each get one toy, since I was paying for the whole trip with CVS Reward Bucks....I bought about $20 worth of stuff for $1.11 -- woo hoo! I still had to go to Office Max, which I was going to save until the next day, but we had to drive past there anyway, so I figured we wouldn't be in there long. BIG MISTAKE. I'm looking at the markers and Caity finds a big bucket of those foam stickers used for art projects that she wants. The buckets were $ way was I going to buy that for her after buying her crap from CVS. Well, of course she threw a fit, wouldn't move from the aisle, crying, screaming that she wanted the big stickers. They had a smaller pack that I was trying to tell her I would buy that she could earn if she got 5 coupons.....yeah right. At this point, I only had one more thing I needed, so I wasn't about to leave the store. Luckily, no one was giving me any really bad looks, even though I did give her a pretty good smack on the butt when she was pinching and hitting me. Thinking back, I probably shouldn't have done that, I might end up on the news with security cameras, etc. We finally got out of there, she's still crying in the backseat, Luke is saying that he doesn't like Caity as a sister and we get on the highway. I turn up the radio, which of course Caity doesn't like, so she takes off her seat belt and stands up. This sends Luke into full hysterics.....Caity's crying and yelling for me to turn off the radio, Luke's yelling for me to pull over and that we're going to get arrested. I pull over on I-43, put my hazards on, and try to reason with 2 hysterical kids. She finally got buckled back in, they both continued to cry. Our final stop was Walgreens to pick up the chewable Amoxicillan for Caity, since she doesn't like the liquid form.....I get it in the drive thru and she wants to see it right away. I get one out and think this will be great, she can eat it right now and it will be all done. HA. Right away she says she doesn't like it. 1/4 mile from home she unbuckles again.....Luke's hysterical again, this time we sat on the side of the road for about 5 minutes, I got her to sit in the seat and drove home with her unbuckled. Get home, get all her stuff and take her up to her room.....after MUCH coaxing, I finally get her to take the liquid amoxicillan with a syringe full of chocolate syrup. This morning was much worse -- we had to hold her down.

Tonight I have to run a couple more errands, while Gary plays softball.....might not be pretty.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Better Listen to my MOM....!!

Last week I was talking to my mom, kind of complaining about Caity, not really asking for advice, but not saying that I didn't want advice!! She called me back about 15 minutes after our conversation, saying that she had a couple things to offer. The first was this: a lot of times both G and I will say things in front of Caity about how she's "bad" at home and around us, which she probably picks up on. If we keep on doing that, she might get to the point, or maybe she already has, that she thinks that she's the "bad" kid. That does make sense. so, the very next day, a teacher at day care came up to me and told me what nice kids I have. Normally I would say, "you should see Caity at home, though". Instead, I just said "Thank you". So, I'm trying really hard to watch what I say.

The other thing my mom said was to ignore Caity when she's yelling to us in the middle of the night. She'll wake up and just start yelling to me -- "MOM, MOM...." I was reminded of when she was a baby and we tried to get her out of needing a bottle in the middle of the night and we'd ignore the crying. After a few days, she wouldn't wake up anymore. So, one night last night, she yelled from about 4 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. She never cried or came downstairs, so obviously she didn't need anything important.

Normally when my mom gives me parenting advice, it kind of makes me mad, I'm not sure why this was different.....maybe because I'm kind of at my wit's end.

Then Saturday night, Caity came downstairs around 4 a.m. instead of yelling, she said her throat hurt, and of course she needed a million and one things. She felt a little warm. I swear she finally fell asleep around 6:30 again. We went to watch G's softball game and then I was talking to my mom again, telling her about Caity's sore throat and warmness -- my mom thought I should take her to the doctor. I thought that was a little premature, until I thought back and realized that Caity has been sniffling for 2 weeks! So, off to urgent care we went. Sore throats are hard, though, because Caity likes medicine, you never know if she really has a sore throat or just wants medicine! She ended up having Strep Throat!! Wow! I seriously would've never thought that! Another reason to listen to my mom!

One funny/disturbing story.....when we were up north, the kids peed in a bucket while we were on the boat. Caity now thinks that she can pee wherever. Friday night when I took her to bed, I asked her if she had to go to the bathroom....she said she already went. I didn't remember her announcing that she had to go, which is always a big production. I asked her when/where she went and she said she went downstairs in the bucket. My first thought is that she went in the cat's litter box. She said "remember the bucket from the boat? it's in the garage" Turns out, that bucket is in the garage, and she did go in that bucket. I tried to make it clear AGAIN, that she needs to pee in the toilet, NOWHERE else.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Good Girl Coupons

Finally....last night was the first time, it seems like in weeks, that Caity has gone to bed well, stayed in bed all night, and didn't yell to one of us in the middle of the night. I told her 2 nights ago that I was going to give her a coupon if she could do all that, which obviously I knew she could do. So, this morning, I made out a little coupon that said "Good Girl Coupon" with a smiley face. She was very proud of it, she carried it all the way to school. I think I will make a different list of things for both kids that they can earn coupons for and when they collect a certain number, they can do something special, like go to ice cream with just one of us, or something similar. We'll see if that makes any kind of difference.

Last night we went to the "National Night Out" at the park in Saukville -- it was pretty cool, since everything was free!! The weather was great, we got free hot dogs, water, popcorn, ice cream cups, balloons, even a gun lock!! The kids went in a couple bouncy houses, got to see the fire trucks, Luke got his pitches clocked -- his fastest pitch was 30 mph. At the end, the Flight for Life helicopter landed on the baseball field, which was pretty cool. We got to walk right up to it. It was amazing how much stuff is packed into there. Gary had Flight for Life training at the fire dept. a few weeks ago and had some good stories. He was saying they have eqpt. in just about every empty space.

Gary's mom had her big surgery yesterday --everything went well....she had her total larynx removed, lymph nodes removed from both sides of her neck, three areas of her throat scoped out, and then a procedure performed to rehabilitate a patient who has undergone total laryngectomy. This involves creation of a fistula between trachea and oesophagus. A prosthetic (Blom-Singer valve) is introduced through this fistula. This procedure enables the patient to regain his ability to speak. (I copied that part from Wikipedia!) It was a 7 hour surgery and then woke up a little finally around 11 last night, which I guess is normal for such a major surgery. They won't know for a few days the results of the pathology, but I guess they're confident that they got all the cancer. But, until they get the results they won't know if she'll have to have chemo or not.