Sunday, June 19, 2011

Getting back to balance

The sleeping issue is morphing into a situation that I don't know how much more of it I can take. Nikko will fall asleep with the help of 1/4 tablet of melatonin. Then he will wake up some time between 12:30-2am and look for me, just so I can put him back to bed. He'll pull over the crib mattress and expect me to lay on it until he falls asleep. Tonight I stacked some blankets on it so I could leave the room after he fell back asleep, hopefully thinking it's still me. I know, I know, I should get rid of the crib mattress from his room. It's really there so that if Nikko wakes up later in the morning, like 3 or 4 am, then I can just sleep on the mattress so I don't have to keep getting up to walk him back. It's working for now, but maybe after summer school is over and during that week break before NWSRA camp begins, I'll try walking Nikko back to his room repeatedly. It's a process that will cause us both to lose sleep, so I'm not looking forward to it.

Nikko is getting proficient at requesting using one/two words. The overall problem is that he is not initiating using words. If he wants something, he will put something in my face (like his sippy cup for apple juice) or he'll push and pull me to where he wants me to go. The whole point of using PECS with Nikko at this stage is to encourage him to use his words when handing off the picture to me. But if Nikko requests using his words, I'm supposed to forgo the picture and give him what he asks for. He's also getting much better while riding his tricycle. Today I took the kids to the playground next to Westbrook School, putting the boys' bikes in the trunk. Nikko was eager to ride around the playground equipment on a strip of sidewalk so he put his bike helmet in my hands and waited. I said, "Put on helmet?" He repeated it and I snapped it on. He quickly turned to jump on his bike and took off. I seriously think he enjoyed that more than anything. Nikko has also been asking to watch the same movies in a maddening rotation: Bolt, Playtime Signs, Mighty Machines, Monsters Inc. (but he brings me the DVD cover and asks for Mike Wakowski), and Up. I like Bolt a lot, but I've watched it way too many times in the past week.

Which reminds me, this past week was very tiresome for me! Hate to sound whiny, but it's the truth. It was the first week of summer school (Extended School Year, or ESY) and was truly the first time I experienced shuffling the kids around to their various classes/activities. Nikko's ESY is five days a week from 9am-12pm. Since Ronin's original park district class got cancelled, I had to merge him with Audrey's preschool primer class at the park district, which is an hour on Thursdays. I wanted Ronin to have a more comprehensive class on his own and enrolled him in the Friday Central Alphabet Station preschool class, 9:30am-11:30am. There has been some spare time between drop-offs and pick-ups so I took the little ones to the library one day, the park outside the school the next. Earlier in the week I took the kids with me to run errands at Target, Costco and Jewel, and it was stressful. They both wanted toys they couldn't have. I'll try to reduce my trips with multiple kids! I know that things won't get any easier regarding the chauffeuring, but it's been a balancing act to see if I could pull off these schedules.

One last note: I found out that Ronin will be in Mrs. McCarthy/Ms. Winter's preschool class next fall because his current teachers got relocated. When they told me, I felt as if I had won the lottery. Another big bonus is that a slot opened in the morning class, so we took it. I hope this is coordinated with the front office for sure. Having Ronin go to school in the morning will work out great with my schedule. I'll probably have to drive all three kids, but Nikko can take the bus home at the end of the day. The boys would be dropped off at school, then I'd take Audrey to the Rec Plex for her own preschool class. After two hours, I'd pick up Ronin and Audrey, take them home for lunch. Perfect!

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