Now that I’m back in the blogging business guess I have no excuse for blogging about the poop-a-rama Jack left for me in the bathroom this morning. At the beginning of the week I was getting up at 6am to catch him waking up and before he went in his pull-up. Then he started sleeping later (probably because Max is home from church camp and they’re keeping each other awake later). Yesterday he didn’t wake up till 6:40, so today I went up there at 7am. BIG MISTAKE!! He’d pooped in his pull-up, taken it off, gotten poop all down his leg/on his shirt/hands/floor/etc. in the process, sat on the toilet and smeared it all over it there, then I guess he gave up and started looking through the cabinet and pulled out the humidifier. Needless to say that bathroom is spotless now and I need to go buy 3 more cans of clorox wipes. I thought I’d bathe him and make him stay naked in the tub (can’t let him play in the water, that would be like rewarding him) while I cleaned the bathroom, but then he was shivering so I had to wrap him up in a towel while I wiped everything down. After all that I went and got two glazed cake doughnuts for me and didn’t share. Yeah.
Yesterday he initiated going potty twice, and today the only time we made him go potty was before and after his nap, he took care of himself the rest of the time. Here’s hoping!
On to other news…
I’m starting to seriously think about his schooling. I’m not sure how much of a schedule we can have with Tj’s lack of a consistent schedule, and with Jack probably needing frequent breaks. I talked to HSLDA today and decided that we’ll have him repeat K this year, and I’ll try to permanently exempt him from testing. They should be sending me info on renting Bergance tests for him yearly. But part of his school will definitely be life skills, so I started that portion a few weeks ago. I found a magnetic chart with days of the week at the top and 7 empty columns below. I made some icons for our chores and stuck them there (I even used a write-on-wipe-off marker to mark when we’d go pick Max up and to draw a pic of me getting my hair cut). We’ve talked about what we do each day several times now, so I wanted to list what we’re doing housework-wise and what Jack’s doing to help us now.
For more than a year Monday has been meal plan and laundry day (Max gathers and sorts, I start laundry. I fold when all laundry is done, it’s not unusual for me to finish washing sometime Tuesday. Then Max puts up all of his and Jack’s clothes, and everything in the two guest bathrooms. I put up everything else.) and Tuesday has been grocery shopping/fill-up-with-gas day. I thought if I just add a vacuum/dust/water plants day and a clean bathroom day we’d have this whole house cleaned every week! So now Jack gathers the laundry (he gets my laundry basket and the one upstairs they use and brings them to the laundry room, and he puts them back when they’re empty), Max sorts, I wash, I fold most of it and when we’re down to the bleach load Jack folds the white rags and sorts the socks while I fold Tj’s t-shirts, then Max and I put up and J puts up his socks. On Tuesday Jack goes with me to Goodwill and to get groceries. He’s not always a pain, but I know it’s boring for him. The first time we went on this new schedule we had a lot of fun noticing the numbers, counting, etc. I always get him a produce bag and blow it up like a balloon when we get to that section. On Wednesday Jack can help dust with his new duster just like mine He also helps move stuff around as I vacuum. Thursday he uses the little vacuum in my bathroom while I’m cleaning it. If there’s ever a day when Max and I are doing chores and I need to find Jack something to do I’ll have him spray the kitchen table and wipe it down (I just need to teach him to not soak the map under the glass, and to not use a whole bottle of spray). He also is good at getting ice and water in cups at mealtime, or the white rag for me. He’s a decent gopher, but there are times…after he’d folded/put up the white rags at least once (and we’ve been using those rags for several years now to wipe their hands and faces at mealtimes) I asked him to get me a rag because he’d spilled some water. I wasn’t anxious about the spill, but I want him to be more responsible when he makes a mess to clean it up. So I asked him to get me a white rag and he headed off in a different direction. I repeated my request and he just looked like he had no idea what I was talking about. I talked him through it but it took a good 5 minutes even though he was standing right at the drawer with the rags in it. It’s like if he’s already thinking about something he has a really hard time switching subjects. He often freaks out when he spills something or can’t properly manipulate his hands to do something he wants to do, and then it’s like he can’t even hear me calmly talking him through the situation. I think he was so fixated on the spill he couldn’t process what I was saying. This boy will teach me patience even if it kills me!
Today as Jack was matching socks (our chore days were off because Max came home from camp Tuesday) Max walked in the kitchen. I asked Max to count how many matches Jack had made and Max was such a trooper! He counted them touching each one, and then sincerely praised Jack for his hard work. He’s such a great brother. Jack is lucky to have him, and we’re lucky that Jack has him, too. I know he has helped Jack’s progress just by being around Jack.
Tonight Austin is spending the night. They were in the dining room and Austin was telling Max to look at this drawing of the boys Tj had done when he was in Colombia. One of the boys looks a little wonky, and Austin said ‘Dude, Jack looks a little bit Asian in this drawing’! Heh, made me laugh out loud.
I just remembered that not long after Mom/Jo left (after the cruise) we saw a stuffed toy monkey. When we asked Jack about it he just started singing ‘Happy Birthday’! It was so sweet. I guess they got it for him for his birthday (which was the day before we got home).