Thursday, September 29, 2005

Principal called again

I am in a rollercoaster of emotions right now. I got a call from the principal today requesting that I drive Alex to and from school instead of him riding the bus. Now, if money were no object, I would be perfectly fine with this; however, money is an object. At the current gas prices, it would cost me between $5-6 a day for transportation. That's $25-30 a week.

When I informed the principal that we just could not financially accomadate their request, she asked me to call the spec ed supervisor. She is someone that I know personally, but because Al is not in spec ed she could not authorize anything. So she gave me the number of the transportation director.

I called and left a message with the transportation director's office. About an hour later he called me back so I had to go over the whole situation with him and his assistant.

Here's the situation: Alex has a problem with soiling and wetting. He wears pull-ups to school and has extra p/u's at school for accidents. I have only been called by the school ONCE to have to pick him up for a soiling accident since school started back on Aug 18. He has had soiling accidents on the bus in the evenings on his way home from school but it has been fully contained in his pull-up. His clothes have never shown any evidence of soiling or wetting. The bus driver made statements that it is getting on her seats. I was really gentle the first time that I spoke with the principal and said that the bus driver's statement was false. I had already spoken with the bus driver and asked if we could have a 2 week period where the school worked with me to have Alex scheduled to go to the bathroom within an hour before he is to get on the bus as this helped him last year (on this same bus driver's bus) to come home virtually accident free. The bus driver agreed. Alex has only attended school 2 days since that time (we had Hurricane Rita) but today I got the call from the principal.

I also told him that I have a 5 year old who has been looking forward to riding the bus with her brother since last year when she was not allowed to attend PreK because of her high test scores.

The transportation director actually listened to everything and thought that my plan was a good one. He also gave some back-up options such as letting both of them ride the accessible bus or even the transportation department providing gas for me to take Alex to school everyday. The only problem is that the other bus may not get him home any sooner in the evenings. The Transportation director said he would call the and talk with the bus driver and the principal at the school tomorrow to discuss the transportation situation. So right now we are at a stand still.

Jaba came home and is quite upset as I am, too, but I'm a little more willing to try and work through the rungs of authority. Jaba told me that either I should or he will call tomorrow and tell them that any other child who ever has a "first incident" report as our son has and is not required to be removed from the bus then he will sue the school board for discrimination. Believe me I understand his frustration, but I think that we may have better results with "honey" first.

Kurt's "Nony"

Kurt loves My Little Pony's. He can even distinguish between them now because I've taught him the color names. They are Purple Nony, Pink Nony, Orange Nony, Ween Nony and White Nony. I don't know why he can say Purple and Pink, but not P-P-P-Pony.

Christmas List

I don't usually let the kids make out a Christmas list for Santa because I don't want them to be disappointed if they don't get what is on their list. Mostly because they really are good kids and I don't want them to think that they've been bad if they don't get everything on their list.

So far I'm thinking that this is what I'm going to get them for Christmas this year.

Cynthia---art drawing supplies & accessories for her clarinet

Alex------a 1/2 size guitar

Mary-Jo---I have no idea yet

Twins-----(yes it will be shared)
tunnels of fun
I was asked some soul searching questions by some friends and I just thought it might be a good thing to record some of them here.

What scripture do you feel you use most often on a regular basis?
I struggle with sin so much in my daily life. It is a great burden to know what is and what is not sin. I don't want to sin, but I do it anyway and then feel like such a failure. The following scriptures are the ones that I use most often for encouragement and as a reminder of His promise.

KJV 1 John 1:9
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

KJV Romans 7:14-25
14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.
16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.
22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

What one thing (if any) do you wish you had learned earlier (or wish you could get to sink in to your brain now)?
being submissive to my husband and allowing him to be the head of our home

Favorite decade and why? Not in your life just in general.
Oh boy, there are so many to choose from and I have very little historical knowledge of most. So, I think I will have to choose 1/2 of the 1990's and 1/2 of 2000 since those are the years that my children were given to me. Afterall, I am living my happily ever after. I'm thinking, though, that my favorite decades are yet to come when all my children are grown and have started giving me oodles and oodles of grandchildren.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


It came to my attention this week that some who visit my blog got a bad "vibe" because of the word "smack" in the name. So I thought it would be appropriate to give the
definition and a synonym for the reason I chose this particular name.

So what does SMACK mean to me?

First the letters represent the first letters of each of my children's first names...

Secondly, not only do I smack my children all the time, but they are always smacking me as well. We smack each other on the cheeks, the lips, belly, legs, feet, arms, etc.

v 2. To kiss noisily.
n 2. A noisy kiss
n 5. An enthusiastic kiss


So now I hope that anyone who reads my blog will have much sweeter thoughts when reading the word SMACK!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

RITA bonfire

Sing with me now...School's out for RITA! No, it's not summer (did you start singing?). It's "Rita" assessment. I know we are out Monday, but not sure what Tuesday and the rest of the week holds. Some areas are still experiencing power outages. Additionally, I think it will depend on whether our gas shortage has abated and if any schools are still being used as a shelter for our Southern neighbors.

The oldest 3 are excited to be at home. However, I don't know how long that will last as I have lots of work planned for tomorrow. We've got lots of laundry to wash, dry & put away and a multitude of little limbs in the yard to get picked up and burned. However, maybe they won't put up such a fuss if I tell them Daddy's going to bring home marshmellows for roasting on a bonfire once all the limbs have been piled up.

Suburban fixed, but NO GAS

We finally have the suburban repaired, but I can't drive it anywhere because Alexandria/Pineville has no gasoline anywhere.
The final cost on repairs was $1000. Thankfully the mechanic is letting us pay it out over a couple of months.

Jab's store can't open because they have a leak in the roof that has left standing water on the floor in the produce aisle as the floor slopes down about an inch or two. They've been in there sucking it up and sloshing it out the last two days.

Our SS teacher called yesterday to check up on us. Jab told me that we are only one of two families in the class of about 20 families who actually have utilities. Jab and I have been stunned that we didn't lose our electricity. We can't remember a thunderstorm since we moved in 6 1/2 years ago when we haven't lost electricity.

Please remember the people who have lost so much in the Gulf Coast in your prayers.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Mary-Jo has a new teacher

Due to Hurricane Katrina our school enrollment has increased tremendously. So our school has added a Kindergarten teacher and Mary-Jo was selected to be moved to her class as the teacher feels that she is able to accept change easily.

To be honest, I was really quite thrilled. I had prayed and asked God to provide a friend or two for Mary-Jo. Today I discovered that there are at least 2 girls that Mary-Jo attends AWANA's and SS with in her new class.

God is Good
All the time!

Principal Conference

I got a letter from the school yesterday concerning Alex.

This is a first offence.
Nature of Incident: Fighting his little sister. Pooped in his pants again. Second request for Alex to ride the Special Ed bus or his mom to provide transportation.
Action taken by School Administration: Principal held conference with studen and student was reprimanded. Parent is to come to school for a conference.

I called the bus driver last night at home and asked why on a first offence she requested that he be transferred. Not only that, but Mary-Jo was fighting as well, so why was Alex the only one written up. The only thing that she wanted to talk about was that Alex had pooped his pants on that day and that she had to move him up to sit behind her and she had to smell it until he got off the bus. I explained to her that I really did not want to split Alex and Mary-Jo between two different school buses.

When I got to the school today to have a conference with the principal, it turns out that the main complaint from the bus driver is that poop got on the seat. This is a bald-face lie! Alex has never had poop on his clothes (I'm the one who washes them) since the first day of school. The principal wanted to know if he had a medical condition for the soiling. He does. Well she wanted to put it in his file. I am just totally opposed to having this in his permanent school record. This is something that he will grow out of and I do not want this following him the rest of his school life.

I made an appointment with our Pedi for tomorrow. I'm not taking Alex, I want to have a sit down talk with the doctor and tell him that the 2 previous treatments are NOT working and I want to have tests done find a specific cause. Alex does not know when he has to go to the bathroom. I have never seen him purposefully soiling his pants, it just slips out.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Football & Rodeoing

Al's football practice started at 2pm Saturday with pictures following at 3:30. His JV game started at 5. He is not a starter so he did not get to play his position the whole game, but he was substituted in about half-way through and played his 2 positions the rest of the game. His positions are the O's. x

xxxxxOxxO x

xx.x x x x x

After football, I took the kids to Cynthia's best friend's (Taylor) rodeo. It was the final one of the season. All of the kids had a tremendous time. Cynthia walked aroun with Taylor. Alex, Mary-Jo, Kurt and Shelby played with toy trucks & toy horses near the edge of the rodeo arena. They had a good 75 x 10 feet of area that they were able to play. When the horses started coming out, Mary-Jo stopped playing and commented how pretty all of them were.

Finally, it was time for Taylor's event, barrel racing. She didn't place in that particular event, but she tied for the overall with one of her other best friends with the same name. They had to do a tie-breaker which "our" Taylor won.

Next year, I will be doing plenty more rodeos.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

WooHoo! We all get to go!

The suburban is still not fixed so I was going to have to leave Cynthia home to babysit while I took Alex to football today (1:30-6:00). Cynthia was really disappointed because she wanted to go to Taylor's last rodeo of the season.

My Mom was scheduled to work tonight, but she is not feeling too well (that part is not a woohoo) so she is letting me use the van so we can all go to Al's football game. Then we are all going to Taylor's rodeo.

Painting & the greatest IL's ever.

I have been doing lots of painting and cleaning at my SIL's and my FIL's home. She is preparing her 2 spare bedrooms (now that her boys have moved out) for the possibility that my FIL may find it necessary to move in. He was diagnosed with prostate cancer back in March. The first line of treatment did not work and the cancer has spread so now he is reluctantly doing chemo. He has been really weak during the last 3 weeks and has not been able to keep up with his normal day-to-day housekeeping. He would never ask me, but I have made it a point to go with my SIL over to his house and just clean little bits at a time. In addition I've been doing his weekly shopping.

My SIL tried to pay me for the painting and the cleaning, but I told her, this is what family does for one another. She has fibromyalgia and is a breast cancer survivor so she is limited in the amount of physical labor that she can do. I told her, Darlene, you have given more to my children over the last two years than I could ever repay by being a step-in Grandmother. She has! She has basically paid for the most part of the 6-Flag vacations that we have been on. We spend several nights in a row over at her house--I mean all 5 children and myself. Who has a friend like that? I'm one of the most blessed persons in the world.

Musical Instruments

I heard Cynthia and her best friend, Taylor, talking about band at the beginning of the second week of school. Taylor was expressing her desire to enroll in band and that she wanted to play flute. Well, I have 2 flutes so I told her to get permission from her mom first and that I would let her use one. If after this year she wanted to continue in band when she gets to high school, I told her that she could have it.

Band was such an intergral part of my life that I am happy to be able to share and pass it on to the next generation.

Cynthia is still playing her clarinet. However, we are going to have to have some repairs made to it as she has left it out and the younger kids messed with it. We've gotten an estimate of $90.

AWANA's Started!

I'm still a Cubbie helper this year. There are nineteen 3 & 4 year old Cubbies enrolled and the majority is made up of the 3 year olds.

Mary-Jo was promoted to Sparks this year. I was worried that I might have to move with her, but she has been a big girl this year and has not had attachment issues like we did the previous 2 years. This is Alex's last year of Sparks before he is promoted to T&T. Finally, my baby, Cynthia, is now in youth group. I have one more year before Kurt and Shelby will be old enough for Cubbies. After their 2 years in Cubbies, I will probably move on to be a T&T or Sparks helper then.

Alex is playing football

and he is LOVING it! He is also not complaining as much about doing his homework because I've made it a rule that he has to finish before we go to practice.

His jamboree is today at 4:30 after a 2:00 practice and 3:30 pictures. We still don't have the suburban repaired and Jaba has to work. I'll have to leave Cynthia at home in charge of Mary-Jo, Shelby and Kurt. However, it won't be so bad because Kurt and Shelby will nap for the majority of the time.

Mary-Jo's 1st day & Katrina students

Mary-Jo's first days of school (kindergarten) was August 30 and Sept 1. Then she started full-time after Labor Day on Sept 6. However, she missed the first day of FT school because the parish buses for Rapides, Natchitoches and Grant parishes were commandeered by Governor Blanco to transport the people who went to the Superdome & Convention Center of New Orleans as a Place of Last Resort to find safety from Hurricane Katrina. Parents in Rapides parish were required to provide transportaion to and from school Tuesday through Thursday, Sept 6-8, while the buses were sanitized and disinfected. NO ONE complained, though, we were HAPPY to do it. What is a little inconvenience compared to what the men, women and especially the children in Southeast Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama had to endure and are still enduring. The 4 Red Cross Shelters alone in our parish has housed over 6,000 people. That does not include those who are being housed in churches or with strangers, family or friends.

Our schools have enrolled over 1700 Katrina evacuee students as of Sept 14. I happened to pick up my children from school yesterday and noticed that there are 2 makeshift classes that have been set up in the hall just in their small school. I am so proud of our parish school district for making changes to quickly accomadate these children so that their lives will have a some semblence of normalcy.

Our computer crashed

Two days after my Bus post, our computer totally crashed. We tried to get a second hand computer but the computer that the guy sold us didn't meet what he said it would do so we took it back. So Jaba & his Dad went to Sam's Club and he bought an Explora GS28 PC. We had been talking about getting a new computer as our old one was at least 7 years old, but we were going to wait until Jab got his Christmas bonus.

I'm finally up and running!

I have been trying for almost a week now to get back onto my blog!!!

I thought I had it figured out a week ago, but for some reason I got locked out again.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

He just Bussed right on by!

Cynthia's bus driver drove by her AGAIN without picking her up. He didn't even slow down to look and see if she was there.

I called his house first thinking, well maybe his wife can call him on the bus and he can come back by and pick her up. No, no phone on the bus. So I call the school and tell them that this is the second time that he's driven right by her. They asked me if I could bring her to school. I said yes, but that she'd be late because I have 2 others that are getting ready for their school bus and two 2 year olds at home as well. They said that she would not be counted as late/tardy and just to bring her in when I could and that the principal would talk to the bus driver.

When I brought Cynthia in, I also asked that when the bus driver was informed if they could discuss with him about picking Cynthia up closer to the place of business--he said he will pick her up at the road which is about 100 feet away from where I'd like her to be picked up. If he were to pick her up closer to the business she could stand on the porch and then when she saw him coming run 30 feet to the busstop rather than 130 feet.

Why can't people be sensible and considerate about such things?

The bus driver called me and apologized. He was very nice and agreed that picking Cynthia up closer to the place of business would be better, especially in inclimate weather.