Friday, July 30, 2010

Quick notes

I've been reading a book about parenting your strong-willed child to try and get a better handle on parenting Ronin. Yesterday I tried implementing the positive attitude shifts that the book supports and it made for a more pleasant Ronin. I think I barely had to raise my voice as well. I hoped today would be more of the same, but Ronin was extremely challenging today, very boisterous, energetic, aggressive, bouncy, and sassy. I kept threatening him with time outs if he kept hitting or pushing Nikko and I felt like I was over-threatening them. It wasn't as smooth as yesterday, but I'll keep trying. This morning I took the kids into the basement and let them run rampant while I folded some clothes. I didn't want to keep telling them what to do, but when tempers flared over a silly toy I took it away from everyone and announced that it was time to go back upstairs. The kids seemed restless indoors so I said that we would go take a walk. The kids get excited when I tell them "Crocs no socks!" or "Socks and shoes!" and it surprises me that they retrieve the appropriate gear each time. We walked toward the train tracks when I saw a house the next block over was having a yard sale. I retrieved some cash just in case and walked us across the street, wary that the kids might get attached to something. One of the girls in that house is Nikko's classmate and her name is Faith. I believe she's another special needs child as she has an enlarged forehead and slurred speech, but I don't know the name of that condition. Her father seems to look just like an older version of Joey Fatone, the member of that group NSync. After perusing the kid items I saw a round kid-sized folding chair with the Disney princesses on it, next to a McQueen chair. Ronin didn't find any interest in the McQueen chair, surprisingly, but I knew the princess chair would be favorable to Audrey and it was slightly larger, so for $5 I got it. I got some change so I could get a styrofoam cup of lemonade that Audrey was quick to pounce on. The boys were entertaining themselves with a McQueen racetrack that was missing a vital track, so I had to announce to them that it was staying and we were going. Ronin raised a stink about it but I tried to impress upon him that he really wanted a racetrack for his birthday next week and that he should wait until then. Nikko kept trying to pull the chair from my grasp all the way home and was whining terribly. We got to the front step and I set the chair down. Immediately Nikko sat in it; that's all he wanted to do. Nikko was also carrying around Bow Wow, that stuffed anti-mite/antimicrobial dog that Denis got from a friend at Reggie's night club. Audrey really wanted to finish off the lemonade so I let her. Beyond our backyard I could hear the roar of a tree-cutting crew so I told the kids that we should go walk and see what's happening. We walked around the block and stood a few houses down from the crew that was indeed cutting branches off a tree while using a cherry-picker. Cheap, free entertainment, huh? We returned home to have lunch, then naptime for the little ones. I tried to lie down with Nikko because that bout of vertigo had really zapped my energy, but Nikko did not succumb to a nap. He was poking my face the whole time. Our afternoon was uneventful but I was fine with that since Ronin was still a bundle of energy. Ronin and Audrey kept donning their shark/duck costumes and getting all sweaty. I engaged in a bout of tickles and physical play with all three of them after naptime and before snacktime. I'm hoping to break out some wipe boards for them tomorrow or Sunday so that they can each have their own and practice some drawing. I may have to turn my head away from the inevitable marker that will get on them, but it's par for the course, right?

Something to note of late regarding Nikko is that he is showing instances where he is not going to have a complete meltdown if I leave the house or his sight. This has been the case on Wednesdays when I leave to go exercise. Nikko hasn't melted down, according to Denis. We've also had some trouble when Denis takes the kids to the basement after dinner. Nikko would stay upstairs and hang around the kitchen for me, thus forcing me to escort him downstairs when I'd rather be upstairs cleaning up the aftermath so the kitchen isn't a total disaster after kiddie bedtime. But tonight he followed everyone else downstairs when the door was opened. He stayed there for a good ten minutes before coming back upstairs for a drink and to wait for me. It's slow progress with many steps backward, but there's still some progress there. I think having the different therapists in the house may help with the transitions, even though overall Nikko is not great at transitions.

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