Last time I wrote, I was feeling pretty defeated after a difficult evening out with autism and staring a family wedding in the face.

Prayers were answered with a HUGE success.

The wedding ceremony was lovely. The bride was beautiful. The groom was happy.  Christian and Brian hung out in the entry of the church, iPad in hand, no vocal stimming loud enough to be heard in the sanctuary. Success. 🙂

Family pictures were taken. Success. 🙂

Brian and I had decided to skip the dinner, knowing that this was the only way that we would be able to stay later into the night. The Golden Arches were visited. Happy Meals consumed. (HuHot for us “old folks.” 😉 Delicious.) Little Einsteins watched. Poo taken (in the right spot!). Success.

Arrived at the dance a little bit early. Mood music playing. Christian danced. Other children joined in. Christian only tried to overtake the DJ “booth” twice. 😉 Few glimpses of anxiety when the dance floor needed to be cleared. Quickly dissolved when dancing resumed. Caught self-ordering soda at the bar. 😉 ❤ Loved the hokey-pokey, especially “That’s What It’s ALL About!” 😀 (Shouted at the top of his lungs.) Left dance at 10:20pm!  Definite success. 🙂

We couldn’t have been more happy…

(Christian's in the white shirt running thru the picture.) 🙂

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Our basement has become the “dumping ground” this week.  After a record number of clean-ups on Tuesday and an over-snuggly day on Wednesday, we decided that Christian needed to see the doctor to rule out another UTI.  Thankfully (because of a 1/2-day of school on Thurs.), I was able to schedule an appointment for right after school.  Christian’s turned into a pro at peeing into the “hat” at the office.  🙂  Unfortunately, the fast results read negative, however, because he was showing symptoms similar to the last 2 times that he had a UTI, the doc decided to shoot him up with the antibiotic anyway.  Christian’s a trooper.  He was NOT happy about the shots, but gave the nurses high-fives as we left the office.  What a guy.  😉 

Too bad the antibiotic hasn’t been slowing down the bathroom issue.  Friday was at least 10 basement clean-ups (Christian didn’t have school).  Saturday — 5.  Today (so far) — 2.  Sigh.  I guess the number is decreasing, but I’d rather have it at a complete zero.  You know?!?

Liv has been testing Christian’s patience this week.  Constantly being right in the midst of what he is working on.  Wanting to do what he’s doing as soon as he starts doing it even if it’s something that she normally doesn’t care to do.  I guess that’s what little sisters do, huh???  So, Liv has been acting like a typical 3-year-old little sister and Christian is pretty frustrated with her right now…

I’ve been working on a new communication board for Christian.  Since he’s reading SO well and his PECS are kind of bulky to carry around, I printed off a bunch of words, stuck them to magnetic strips, and put them on a small magnetic dry erase board.  He hasn’t taken to it yet, but its new.  He does like the magnetic words, though, because he knows them and can read them.  I figure with the board being dry erase, too, we can just write a word on it if we don’t have it on a magnet.  I’m hoping it will be slick.  🙂  eventually…

Saturday — we braved the Agricultural Expo at the local fairgrounds.  Liv loves it.  They have a petting zoo.  🙂  Christian tolerates it, as long as he is riding in the wagon (which he is quickly outgrowing, especially if Olivia insists on riding in it with him).  It went fine.  Although, it’s really hard to maneuver a wagon in a crowded building.

Oh, and Christian decided to wake-up for the day at 3:30 (and, unfortunately, had only gone to bed around 11pm).  Thankfully, after the Ag Expo, Brian and Liv went back to take a nap and Christian was willing to lay down with me on the couch.  We were both sleeping within 5 minutes.  It’s the first time in a LONG time that he has taken a nap.  I’m SO glad that he did!  🙂

After supper last night, we headed over to my in-law’s church where they were having a Spring Blast.  They had events going on all day, but we were trying to catch the tail end of a concert and then the fireworks.  The concert was FANTASTIC!!!  The band Koine was playing.  Wow!  The awesomest (I know, NOT a real word) thing that happened was just watching Christian.  He immediately started dancing.  His dancing.  And he closed his eyes.  You could tell that he was just ABSORBING the music.  It was absolutely beautiful!  🙂  (I have to say that my eyes teared up a couple of times.)  He still did try (and succeed a few times) in running away and around and even once up front by the band eyeing up a banjo, but it was just so incredible to watch how the music of the hymns brought to life just moved him!  🙂

Christian and Olivia also LOVED the fireworks.  🙂  I could hear Christian say, “Fireworks!  I love!”  🙂  It was a really good show. 

Christian was pretty wound up, though, when we got home.  Between the music, fireworks, and his nap, he wasn’t able to fall asleep until after 11pm, but he stayed asleep through the night, so I have no complaints! 😉

What a week…

Olivia is busy building a contraption.  Yep, that’s exactly what she’s calling it.

My hubby gets to attend his very first season Packer game in Green Bay.  For free (minus the cost of gas).

Christian loves to dance, and I love to watch him.

Therapist, WD, brought me a Starbucks drink when she came to work with Christian this afternoon.  Yum!

I got a workout (and tired out Olivia) by shoveling our driveway/sidewalk for an hour+ this morning.  I’m thankful that it was only 3″ of snow.  😉

I am doing cartwheels! 

I am breaking out the dorkiest dance moves that you can imagine.

Why?  You may asking.

Christian had a GREAT week of school!  Hurray!  I’m just SO THRILLED!!!  🙂

And here’s the kicker… the first grade classes are starting reading groups (according to ability) next week and they plan on incorporating that into Christian’s schedule (3 days a week) because he is breezing through what his current room is reading!  (And comprehending it.)  WOW!  Yay, Christian!!!  🙂

Short version — the day was really good.  Long version — read on…

I woke at 5:30 (to an alarm — crazy!!) to have a chance to read, get dressed, and have a cup of coffee before the kids were up.  It was lovely to just have a little slice of peace before the chaos!  😉  I turned on Christian’s wake-up music at 6am.  (A combination of High School Musical 2 & 3, the Doodlebops, Choo Choo Soul, Crazy Frog, Baha Men, and the Imagination Movers.  It’s great get up and get moving music.  🙂 )  By ten after, he was up AND DANCING around in his room!  Of course, I had to join him!  He is the CUTEST dancer EVER!!!  (I’m serious!  I will try to get some video to prove it!)  By 6:30 Olivia was up, too, and had joined the dance party in Christian’s room.  What a great way to start the day!  🙂  The choreographer in Christian, though, got a bit upset with me when we got to the “I Don’t Dance” song (from HSM2) and I wasn’t doing the dance moves correctly.  Apparently, that will be my homework while he is at school this week!  (OK, and how ironic is it that they are dancing during a song about not being able to dance?  Anyone???)  I was able to work in the beloved cheeseburger in between the dance moves and Christian was fed, dressed, and toileted by 6:45!  Yay us!!! 

Getting on the bus — now that was NOT a happy adventure.  He saw the bus and dropped to the floor.  Grabbed all of the door frames between the living room and the carseat in the bus and held on like his life depended on it.  And then came the lip quiver and crocodile tears.  Now THAT breaks my heart EVERY time.  It is the saddest face you’ve EVER seen.  It is hard for me not to cry when he pulls that out and he only pulls it out when he really IS sad.  My heart wanted to open up and just hold him until he calmed down, but instead I had to try and talk him through it as I wrestled him into the carseat.  I tried to console myself with the knowledge that when he cried like this last school year, I was told he always calmed down by the time they crossed the railroad tracks (about a 1/4-mile from our house).  As Olivia and I waved “bye-bye” to him, I waved good-bye to part of my heart that was on the bus with Christian.

After I knew that he was at school, Olivia and I headed out to a nearby county woods.  We had a lovely walk.  It was gorgeous and QUIET and peaceful.  Exactly what I needed.  Then we stopped by the convenience store for a bunch of bananas (we were out and Christian’s taking them in his lunch) and Olivia talked me into a beverage as she was thirsty from our 45-minute hike.  She made herself busy coloring when we got home, so I busied myself with the dishes and sweeping the kitchen floor.  Ah, I felt much better about the house.  🙂

Olivia settled into a nap with Brian after lunch.  (Yay for a walk that tired her out!!!)  So, I had time to just chill and play a game on the computer.  (Latte Land, anyone?  It is TOO much fun!)  Before I knew it, I had to head out to pick up Christian from school. 

Christian was busy typing on the computer when I got to his classroom.  He had a GREAT day at school.  Even went to the bathroom for them.  (This was a concern of ours, so YAY!!!)  I guess he must have been tired from his early wake-up call, and had fallen asleep in his sensory break area after lunch.  They woke him after 45-minutes.  (My request to let him sleep some as he is not one to nap unless he needs it and he still had 4-1/2 hours of therapy after school.)  So, yay, great first day!!!  My worries, again, were proven useless.

We rushed back home to start therapy (and visit with my bro who happened to be in town on business yesterday).  Christian jumped right into therapy.  He was working with one of his senior therapist, AT, and a therapist in training, CZ.  Busy times, but Christian did great.  (I think that nap did him a world of good!)  Then AT left and AB came while CZ continued training and our other senior therapist, AZ, came to do paperwork and file for approval to work on community outings.  (Like going to the grocery store without running away.  Wouldn’t that be great?!?)  Christian was still going strong at 6:30.  Wow! 

So, all the therapist left and our family was able to have dinner.  Christian then played in the basement (to just unwind, I think, and be by himself), while Olivia reminded Brian of his promise to take her outside after supper if she took a good nap during the day.  I was able to veg as my mind wasn’t functioning very well anymore.  (Perhaps I should nap with Brian and Olivia, too.)

We attempted to get Christian into bed around 8:30, but he wasn’t ready.  He couldn’t sleep.  Once Olivia was sleeping in her bed, he came out and snuggled with me on the couch and finally fell asleep around 10:15.  LONG day for my little man!  He complained a bit when I moved him to his bed around 10:30, but then rolled over and went right back to sleep.  🙂

I decided to move his wake-up time back a little bit this morning since we were ready SO early yesterday.  We still got out the door on time.  He was all tears and lip quivers this morning.  ALL morning.  From the moment he came out of his room this morning.  Oh, my heart aches for him!  Is he not feeling good?  Just sad?  Not liking this new routine?  I wish I knew.  But, for now I’m praying that his day goes just as well as yesterday did…

It was only a week ago when I wrote about the current High School Musical 2 obsession.  I thought this would be a pretty strong obsession — one not to be easily replaced.  I guess I was wrong.  The new movie obsession is Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Blossom Festival.  (At least Christian insists on watching this in the basement.)  In Christian’s perfect world, Strawberry Shortcake would be playing on the TV in the basement and HSM2 would be playing on the living room TV and he would just run back and forth between the two watching the “best parts” of both.  What a silly guy! 🙂

Then there is the window obsession — besides climbing and dancing on the window sills — he also hates it when the windows are open in the living room/kitchen area.   He seems to notice either when the crickets are loud or a vehicle drives by and immediately runs around the room shutting the windows as fast as possible.  As soon as he leaves the room, I tend to open them back up (as we get a nice cross-breeze blowing through the house).  He always sighs when he notices that they are open again and has to re-close them all.  And I sigh, too, as he does just that.

And the water obsession continues — blocking up the sink and running it until it is within millimeters of overflowing (so far I have always found him by then).  Little People swimming lessons in the toilet (thankfully without the flushing part this year).  Giving himself a shower anytime possible (and staying in for at least a half-hour).  The bathroom either has to remain closed or closely monitered.  Which makes for some misses in the toileting department (when we can’t get the door open fast enough.)  I am glad, though, on nice days, he is content with a 5-gallon bucket of water that he can soak his fingers and Little People in.  101_1726