Monday, October 31, 2011

We'll see how it goes

Tomorrow is Tator's birthday. I'm not at all excited about this and let me tell you why.

About three weeks ago her attiude changed. When I really thought about it I could almost pinpoint it right back to a certain conversation we had around that time. She was going on and on about her birthday and how she wanted her party and what she wanted for her birthday. I reminded her that her attitude would determine how her birthday went. After 6 months of pretty bad raging I did not have a problem telling her that. My apologies to anyone who doesn't agree.

My fear is that her attitude changed because of her birthday and will change right back as soon as her party is over. Her change for the better has made things so nice around here and she is pleasant to be around. I pray she is really changing and starting to heal, but only time will tell.

Grandma and grandpa brought Bubbas a kit for some hatchingTriassic Triops home from vacation. Bubbas and Bunny had fun setting them up today. We are on day one and they are still eggs. We have never done anything like this before. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Busy Lives & Making Progress

Buc needed to make an edible car for school. He remembered as he was going to bed and threw this together in about 5 minutes.

Sissy ran a fever today, but is showing no other signs of sickness, so I'm really hoping its just teeth and we're not starting something.

Duckie continues to work full time and go to school (college) full time. He has gotten a taste of the real world real quick.

Bunny left last Friday night to go on vacation with her grandparents and I am really starting to miss her. Can't wait to see her on Saturday.

Bubbas and I finished up talking about Europe this week and start on Asia next week. I looked ahead in his phonics book and according to it he should be reading small words by the end of the next week. So we'll see.

Buster is still Buster full of energy and always finding trouble. I love that guy.

My husband continues to be very stressed about the house. He has actually stepped back a little and is spending more time at home with us and less time at our other home. Not sure when we will ever be able to move in.

Tator, knock on wood, is doing great. I'm trying real hard not to get too excited , we've had these periods before. I don't want to think i'm only seeing these improvement because her birthday is coming up, but whatever it is i'm going to take it. I thought it was all going to end tonight at dinner. After plenty to eat, I told her she was done when she wanted more. I had made dessert and I wanted her to be able to eat it comfortably. She started to get very upset, very fast. Food is a big trigger for her. But one of the little boys, who knew we had dessert, asked when we were having dessert and she calmed down very fast. This is a big improvement. There have been other times when I stopped her from overeating because we were having dessert later and it still turned into a rage. So to me this is progress.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Learing about Ireland and Germany

Last week Bubbas and I studied Ireland and Germany.

I am having so much fun with this.
For supper one evening we had Irish Roast Pork with Potato Stuffing,
Scones, and an Irish Apple Cake for desert.
I got all the recipes from here.

It was really good, but different.
Not a real colorful dish, but I didn't use fresh sage and thyme like it called for.
I was afraid if my kids saw something green in it they wouldn't eat it.
I just used the seasoning, I'm sure if I would have used fresh it would have looked prettier.

Then later in the week we made a German cookie.
 I didn't think to take a picture right when they were done so the cookies,
 like the Irish Apple cake were gone before I knew it.

Monday, October 24, 2011

and two steps back

Yesterday we took Tator to church with us for the first time in about 5 months. I think I blogged about her problems with church awhile ago. She hates it. She says she doesn't want to hear about God and that she doesn't believe in him.

Sitting in church with her has been a struggle. We give her paper and pencils to write with, I even used to take crayons and she still isn't happy. She has threw herself down on the floor before and crawled under the pews. She has kicked the people sitting in front of us from under the pew. She has pulled her dress up around her belly and sat, not caring at all about embarrassing herself, just trying to upset her dad and I. One Sunday morning she ran from us and it took us 20 minutes, 3 ushers and 1 Sunday School teacher to find her. The Sunday school teacher found her upstairs hiding in a dark hall way inside a dark closet.

Some Sunday mornings it has started before she's even out of her room. She will wake up very early and jump off her bed repeatedly. Or slam her dresser drawers. You get the picture. Awhile ago she woke up in the middle of the night for 4 Saturday nights in a row and she would jump off her bed, slam her register open and closed, slam dresser drawers, and growl like a wild animal. Telling her to go back to bed was pointless and trying to talk to her was our of the question. She would literally keep herself up all night.

We just continued to go and deal with the fighting. I remember going one morning taking her in without any shoes on because she had kicked her little brother so many times in the car we took them off her.

For the last 6 months Tator has raged daily, when we would get to Sunday it would just be easier to stay home with her. Neither Shawn or I would feel like fighting with her. I wanted to go to church and enjoy myself and Shawn always had enough to do at the new house that he would go and work taking her and I would go to church. Except I wouldn't enjoy myself, I would cry through the whole service because my husband was not there.

Then we started using respite and that gave us a chance to all go to church together. Of course, she would go to church with the respite provider, sit in the service and be fine. No surprise!

This week we decided we were going to try it again. She went and did well. I was not surprised, I know she is very capable of sitting through church, she had done it for many years up until now. As soon as we walked out of church I could tell by her body language that things were about to change. On the way home she had some attitude with the other kids, but she wasn't going to get out of line because she knew take out pizza was at stake.

She ate lunch and then was told she needed to go lay down in bed. This is something she does every weekend, she is totally used to. It gives all of us a break, plus the other kids all lay down.

I could tell as soon as I said it she was going to start. So I followed her upstaris as she yelled and carried on that she was not gong to lay down. She ran in and jumped on her bed. I told her if she didn't lay down I would be leaving and not tucking her in. I said this 2 more times then turned around walked out and shut the door. She then threw herself down and started to cry. She loudly cried this fake cry for awhile then started to very loudly kick her dresser. Then from that she progressed to slamming her dresser drawers and growling like a wild animal.

I just kept thinking she'd calm down.I did not want to have to go into her room, she is unreasonalble when she's like that. She kept being so loud and I knew she was going to wake Sissy so I finally went in. I tried talking to her to find out what was wrong she just kept jumping on her bed and telling me no she wasn't going to lay down. I tried to hold her and she started kicking me and hitting. She ended up kicking me pretty hard in the stomach and biting my wrist. So I left.

She ended up jumping on her bed and yelling for a couple hours. Then came down and spent some time sitting in the living room with dad. Then I gave her supper and put her back to bed.

Tonight she wrote sentences for kicking and biting me.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

One step forward

Tator's new haircut. Sorry the pictures are so bad, I took them with my Ipod.


Yesterday Tator had a Fall Festival at her school. She was so excited and talked about it all week.

When she came home from school I was upstairs putting away laundry. She came running upstairs to show me all the things she had made at the festival. A kit to make a dream catcher, papers to make a totem pole, left over food(?), and a kit to make a bag like the Indians carried their medicine in. I'm not sure why none of it had been put together at school. But anyway, when we were done looking at it I told her she should go downstairs and put her stuff in her drawer right away so her little bothers didn't get into it.

Anytime she brings anything home from school her little siblings love to look at it and this makes her very upset. She was already VERY dysregulated and I knew if they started touching everything she was going to get mad and escalate very fast.

When I came downstairs she was sitting on the kitchen floor with her stuff all over the counter and on the floor all around her, including her little brothers. I got down on her level and took her face in my hands and said, "you need to put this stuff away and get it back out later when your brothers are doing something else." She continued on with what she was doing. I let it go about a minute and a half and as her brothers were grabbing stuff and she was yelling I got back down and said it all over again only telling her if she didn't put it away it was going to be put up for awhile.

I let it go for about another minute then said, "Ok, now you need to go put it in my room." She grabbed everything yelling and crying as she carried it to my room. Then she threw herself down on my floor crying and carrying on. I got down and took her chin in my hands and asked her, "didn't I tell you if you didn't put it away it would be put up for awhile?" She just continued to cry and carry on so I told her she needed to go to her room for awhile and calm down.

Then she stood up and went. No fighting or arguing, no running away from me, no throwing things, or hitting and kicking me. I gave her about 10 minutes then I went back up and sat down on her bed. She was laying across it crying. I asked her if she was calmed down now and she said she was still a little sad. When I asked her why she crawled up onto my lap and said she was afraid I was going to throw her stuff away. I told her I wasn't going to throw it away it was just going to stay in my room until tomorrow.

She hugged me and started to calm down. I went over with her again about why I wanted her to put it away and knew how upset she would get if something happened to her things. I told her I knew how days like this, that were different from the normal days, left her feeling very out of control. She hugged me again and said she was trying to take one day at a time.

We came back downstairs and she was very calm. We were able to run her brother to town without her having any problems in the car. After dinner I rocked her for awhile then we sat on the couch together and watched T.V.

So far today everything is going pretty good. I sure hope this is how the rest of the weekend goes.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Some updates and a really good recipe

Buster had a follow-up appointment with his ENT Dr. yesterday. He said everything looked good.
We're so relieved his speech has returned to normal.
Duckie told us tonight that he has all A's on all his first college midterms. We're so proud of him. He's been working full time and going to school full time.

Tator also had a very good evening tonight. Which means everyone has a good evening.

We realized we are in way over our head with the house. It is way more work then we can do on our own. We had a contractor come and give us a price on finishing it up for us, but it was way more than we could afford. We have no idea what were going to do now.

We do have someone working on the upstairs (the downstairs is what needs most of the work). These pictures are of a bedroom that we knocked the walls out on both ends. The top picture we knocked the wall out between the bedroom and bathroom. We are putting up a new one that will  make the bathroom about 3 feet bigger.

The bottom picture (I realize its not a very good picture) we knocked out the wall between the bedroom and a huge walk in closet. We are putting up another wall and making the walk in closet a laundry room. So I can have my laundry on the same floor as all the bedrooms. I'm really excited about that.


I tried a new recipe tonight that someone my dad works with gave him. It was for Italian Cheese Bread. I cut it up and we ate them like they were bread sticks with our Upside down pizza. They were awesome! Everyone loved them.

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour                    
1 tsp. salt                                                 
1 tsp. sugar                                              
1 Tbsp. yeast
1 cup warm water
1 Tbsp. veg. oil

1/3 cup Italian dressing 
1/2 tsp. salt                                                                          
1/4 tsp. garlic powder 
1 tsp. oregano 
dash of pepper                                    
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 Tbsp. Parmesan chesse
1/2 c. mozzarella cheese

Combine first four ingredients. Add warm water and oil, mix well. On floured surface knead for 1-2 minutes until smooth and elastic. Cover and let rise in greased bowl for 20 minutes. Punch down dough and pat into 12" round greased pizza pan. Brush with Italian dressing. Combine seasonings and cheeses and sprinkle over Italian dressings.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown. This makes excellent bread sticks served with warm pizza sauce.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


   Tator wanted to run cross country this year with Bunny and Bubbas. So we let her. She said she loves it. She went to every practice, ran, and had a good time. She was always excited when she got home from school and knew there was cross that night. She would get a snack, do her homework and get ready pretty easy.

But there was a pattern when it came to Saturday races. One was early in the morning and pretty far away so I didn't even try to take her because of her car issues. But the rest we're early afternoon. We would usually get up and start on some Saturday morning chores and once they were finished we'd get ready to go. Tator could handle helping out and was for the most part cooperative. Then right before it was time to go she would lose it over something. She would start to rage to a degree I knew I couldn't put her in the car. So she would stay with dad. Being fine and cooperative the rest of the day for him.

I often questioned why this was. She said she loves to run. I don't see that she does, but she never seems to enjoy anything. Was she doing this on purpose?

Last night was their last cross practice. They were going to play games and have a pizza party. She knew about this and seemed to be pretty excited about it. When she came home from school she was mad. We could see it as soon as she walked in the door. She started on her homework and quickly broke the lead of her pencil. This is something she does almost every time she does homework. She pushes down on the pencil real hard until it breaks. I told her she would have to wait a minute for me to sharpen it. She was not happy about that at all. 

She started saying she was sick and running a fever. She asked me to touch her head to see if she was hot. She wasn't and I told her that. She got mad and fell to the floor saying I was lying and that I didn't know how sick she really was. So I told her I must have been wrong and that she should come here so I could feel her head again. She did and I told her she was right, she had a horrible fever and she should stay in the car and rest with me during cross practice. She fell to the floor again screaming and crying that she wasn't going to miss the last practice and the pizza party.

So I told her to go wash her hands because she had lead all over them. She screamed her hands we not dirty and she didn't know why I always had to tell her what to do. When she opened the bathroom door she saw some gnats on the bathroom sink (yes we are having a gnat problem right now) so she totally flipped out and said she was never going in the bathroom again. Why would I not have done something about those gnats today while she was at school.

By this time she was totally out of control. Although I was trying to stay very regulated myself I had that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach knowing I could not put her in the car. I talked her into going to her room and she did stay there long enough for me to call my mom and have her come get Bunny and Buster and take them to cross.

When I went to her room to talk to her she said she was mad about a paper she had colored Friday night and had taken to school to show the class today. They were too busy to look at it and the teacher said it would have to wait until tomorrow.

So you tell me. What was this really about. The RAD in her that won't let her enjoy anything? A paper that the she really wanted to show the class and didn't have time to do? Or was it just reentry from respite this weekend?

I don't know. But the one thing I do know is, it will be a long time before I let her color and picture to take to school again.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Homecoming and other random stuff

Last week was supposed to be my get back on track week. I was going to get back into the routine of exercising everyday and trying to blog every other day.

Then life happened.

We had an appointment every morning last week.
Our Internet was down most of the time. Which made us get behind with school, also making it hard to blog.
Buster had the flu and kept me up all night one night while he threw up.
Buc had another migraine. You can read about them here and here. This one wasn't too bad and he never got confused, but they are really hard on me emotionally. I worry through the whole thing.
We started feeding the neighbor lady's farm animals while she's on vacation.

Also, as an accomplishment, I read an entire book in a week in a half. I don't know when I've ever done that.

We had a really nice weekend. Duckie went to homecoming with Belle. Bunny and Bubbas ran another cross country meet and are doing super. They have both improved their times. I can't believe how well Bubbas is doing with only being in kindergarten. He's really enjoying being part of a team.

We did put Tator in respite this weekend. I wasn't sure what to do. We had worked it out that she go every other weekend, but since she went 2 weekends ago she has been doing some what better at home. But since we were supposed to have a cross country race on Saturday and she has found a way to sabotage almost all the races she's supposed to bein, we decided it would be a good idea if she went.

This week Bubbas and I are headed to Ireland. I can't wait!

Have a great week everyone!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Dusting myself off

   I know I've been "missing" for awhile now. I haven't been posting and what I have posted really has no importance. The truth is I don't know what to say. In the past couple months things have gotten a lot rougher than they had been. I know in a lot of my past posts I've said Tator is having a really hard time, but now things are really starting to affect everyone.

   Tators rage has reached an all time high. She has made threats against me and one of the other kids. Which got us a trip to the psych hospital. Where she was not admitted, but we were told she has a VERY bad behavior problem. Duh!!!! Yesterday she made a different threat against me, which has caused me to be up all night. Waiting for her alarm to go off. Because I no longer have faith in the trazadz*ne she takes to help her sleep keeping her asleep. Over the last few months it has proven to not be working.

   I haven't been here because I don't know what to say. I have nothing positive or hopeful to write about. RAD has pushed me down and I'm having a hard time getting up and dusting myself off. So I have stopped blogging. I have basically went into hiding. I shut myself off from the outside world. I know I am not supposed to feel alone. I have some great friends who are here and a couple I have met through blogging who I know are here for me, but its still hard. There isn't an island somewhere for all of us moms parenting kids with RAD (which I would so be living on if there was) so its still weird to be around people with "normal" kids.

   I have been mad at God. Asking him why he let this abuse happen to my baby girl, or why he won't let her heal. Why doesn't He want her to be happy. I know this is wrong. I shouldn't question God. I still believe He's there watching over us. But I don't feel him. She was born a helpless, needy infant. Why did he let these things happen to her?

   I can't figure out how to do this anymore. Between the new house, everyones needs, and Tator. I feel lost and overwhelmed. I can't find it in me right now to be the therapeutic parent she needs. I feel like an empty shell of a mom, expecally to her.

    I feel joy on Monday mornings when that big yellow school bus pulls up and gives me respite for the next 8 hours. I can pour myself into homeschooling and spending time with the other kids. To give them the time and attention
 they lost over the weekend while RAD consumed us. But then I cry all day Friday knowing whats ahead.

   We have been using respite about every other weekend so that has helped us as a family. Since she has been making threats we've decided that we all need a break every once in awhile. I can slowly see the little boys bad behaviors improving. When she is not here every weekend for them to see disrespect and violence. I tell myself things will get better.

   For now, I apologize I don't have much to say. I am hurting and don't know where to turn. I am trying to post some other things. This is my journal of our life and our life isn't just Tator, although right now that's what it feels like. And believe it or not I've actually been doing much better, but last nights threats have kinda pushed me back down. So until I can pick myself up and dust myself off this is the best you get.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Europe here we come.....

 After a lot of debating and praying I choose to enroll Bunny and Bubbas in an online school this year. Part of me was worried I wouldn't be able to keep up with everything they wanted me to do with Bubbas, but the other part of me was so excited not to have to worry about what we were going to do everyday or finding the time to put together all the lessons myself.

I have to say it was a great choice.
As soon as Bunny figured out how to get her lessons every day she became a lot more independent. She also has 2 online classes a day. In the morning she has a math class and in the afternoon she has a literature class.
Her and I have always struggled doing math together so this is great for both of us. While she's in class having someone else teach her math (someone she won't argue with) it gives me time to really work with Bubbas. She's really enjoying the change this year.

I have to admit I was very unsure about homeschooling Bubbas this year. He is so hyper and hates anything that has to do with school. But he is doing great. I am really enjoying watching him mature and learn new things everyday. I decided to do Kindergarten with him again this year. He did real well last year with Kindergarten math but really struggled with phonics.

We are really enjoying history. We started out learning about the different continents and the countries in them. This week we are talking about the continent of Europe, and the countries Spain and England. A couple nights ago we had a Spanish dinner to go with our lesson. I choose a chicken and Spanish rice casserole and a quick and easy apple tart. Almost everyone enjoyed the dinner and Bubbas is really enjoying telling everyone about what he has learned.