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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Spencer is 9

Dear Friends and Family,

Biggest news of the week is that Spencer is now 9. On Saturday Meredith came to stay with Taylor and Robyn while we took Allison, Spencer and two of his friends to Boondocks. They have laser tag, an arcade, bumper boats, go-karts, minature golf, batting cages etc. It has that frantic atmosphere I associate with Chuck-e-Cheese but the kids had a great time. Spencer struggled a bit and we had moments of tears like when he lost a bunch of arcade games so he only had a few tickets for prizes compared to everyone else. (We're going to ask if we can up medicine dosages for high stress days like birthdays. His current meds keep things pretty functional most of the time but there are days where he looses it still). The nice part was that Spencer could go have his melt-down in private and the party could go on without him till he could rejoin the group. I should have known better to not hurry and get things together at the last moment to help decrease the stress level but next year I hop to do better at remembering how high stress special occasions are for him.

Not to say he didn't have a great time. On one rogue shot at minature golf he got a hole in one which he thought was wonderful. He has been enjoying his presents and woke up at 5 am so he could start playing. We're going to push for an early bedtime tonight! We gave him a wave, a new type of skateboard that he has been working hard to figure out. He has been campaigning for his presents for several weeks now. He was eager to take his new scriptures to church and read through most of sacrament meeting. He also got a tamagatchi that he has wanted for a year now. Its a digital pet that he is constantly checking to see if it needs anything. So he has been a happy boy.

This week the 3rd graders did their play the wizard of oz. For 3 days Spencer had to wear his uniform of black dress pants and white oxford shirt to school. He assumed every night that I would be able to preform some laundry magic to make his shirt white again in time for school the following morning. It was a major undertaking of a play, lasting an hour, and was quite entertaining. They had some tiny little girl playing the witch who had the best cackle as she ran around the stage. As soon as Spencer finished his part in the Wednesday night performance he ran back to see if I had seen him do his part. I was in the back with Robyn watching so he didn't know I had seen him and was concerned. I can't help but remember 5 months ago when Spencer thought it would be best if he could kill himself and would scream if he thought I had seen him,. eating hiding under a chair, and unable to get into the car unless I closed my eyes and he would hide behind my seat. It is amazing what a difference medicine can make as now I get hugs and thank-yous and love yous. Grandma Lauri was able to join us that night for dinner and the play which was fun. She uses her walked now almost exclusively and is much more stable in her walking. Spencer had his Dads and Doughnuts this week as well (busy week!) and was happy to stuff down as many doughnuts as he could while spending time with Jeremy.

I was using my camera yesterday and Jeremy asked why as he had all his stuff. I pointed out how he does the quality shots that get posted a few here and there while I go for quantity! He hurt his knee this week and gutted it out yesterday for a 6 hour birthday party and has been paying the price ever since laying down his his leg elevated and iced. So I appreciate him posting pictures from his convalescent bed. He was on Family Home Evening lesson this week and took us up to the temple and talked about temples. Our kids loves it and acted very interested and relatively reverent until Robyn at the end decided grass was made for running and why run if you can't yell at the same time.

Taylor has started laughing as the sun continues to be out. It was a cloudy/rainy day on Friday and everyone noticed how glum he looked. His snotty nose is gone for which I am grateful. Since he can't blow his nose he just randomly sneezes and snot flies everywhere!

Allison is busy trying to help everyone that she can think of. She actually had 2 birthday parties yesterday as she spent the morning at one for her friend. She loved it. She had her parent-teacher conferences this week and her teacher said there is nothing to say beyond she is perfect and exactly what I would want every kindergartener to be like. She was bumped up 2 reading levels so she is reading harder books now, beyond the 1 syllable easy to sound out words. She gets frustrated but is proud that she can do it. Her school had a book fair so she spent a long time picking out the perfect book to get (which at these events is never a real book, their posters and toys go like hot cakes while the books stay on the shelf) she finally found a multi-colored pen and a sticker book that she had enough money for. She made lunch for all of us today and was just bursting with pride that she could do it and kept asking us if she was making good choices today.

Robyn is a cute little menace still. She is very funny, full of energy and a curiosity about everything. Curiosity plus determination makes trouble. One example of a fairly typical evening from this week: just getting back from picking up Allison from dance I go to make dinner. I hear this crash from upstairs and find that Robyn has swiped the hamster's cage off of the dresser into her crib with shocked looking hamsters racing around and sawdust with hamster poop all over the crib and Robyn. Remake the bed with new sheets, give her a bath etc and eat dinner. Hamsters are recuperating. Then while we bus the dishes Robyn disappears. We hear another crash. Race up to find that Robyn had climbed on to the top of the back of Allison's rocking chair and fallen backwards while holding onto the door of the hamster's cage that was locked. So she pulled the cage on top of her head, split her lip, broke the cage and is covered in fresh sawdust and hamsters look shell shocked. So yet another bath as Jeremy mutters about 'not learning her lesson the first time' as he struggles to repair the cage. Then as we pen her in downstairs I go to get the scriptures and find that Robyn unnoticed has climbed onto the counter to get down Spencer's pills - luckily she had only eaten a vitamin and steered away from the bad ones. Its a good thing she is cute. Spencer and Allison are little Robyn alarms and I am constantly hearing "no, robyn" in screechy voices.

I had my last dental appointment this week with 4 more fillings. They had to take 2 of the teeth down to little spikes and cut away a bunch of gum tissue. Not pleasant and am glad that once my mouth heals up I won't have to see my dentist for a while. I was able to finish painting our bedroom this week. I still need to do some touch-ups. It is looking nice. Robyn kept sneaking in to help by spreading spackle with a little trowel on the walls for me! Kids and painting don't mix. I am starting to decide on paint for downstairs. We got insulation bids this week and the electrician finished up. Its getting closer! On Friday we had a date but Jeremy was pretty crippled at that point so after eating dinner he went home high on painkillers to crash and I ran errands and was able to go to the temple. It hit me that Easter is a week away this year and I didn't have an easter dress for Allison or things for baskets. So I was able to shop a bit without kids, always a fun and rare experience. I haven't done an endowment for two months and hadn't realized that they changed the ceremony, the changes made a lot of sense to me.

Love to you all, Heather


Skeeutopia said...

Heather, let me introduce you to something called a toothbrush... just kidding. Now as for Robyn, she sounds like fun in a tornado-ripping-the-roof-off-your-house kind of way. Bummed that we are so far away that we are not able to witness the havoc firsthand; or perhaps that's a good thing? Looking forward to the family vacation. On the bright side, your family is all healthy (besides the crippled elderly husband).

Skeeutopia said...

Sorry, had a little more to say. Remember my David quote book that you made for me before my mission?
So, I have this great quote in there about the youth of the church being generals in heaven and a hush will fall over heaven when we tell people what time period we lived in....well much to my surprise when I hear an announcement over the pulpit today about how no general authority has ever made that comment and how it should not be used, perpetuated, or repeated in any church sanctioned event. Couldn't help but think of my wayward sister and her quote book full of false doctrine....get thee hence satan....ok, just kidding. Love the book, shocked by the announcement in church, and I promise not to turn you in....your loving faithful nonjudgmental perfect brother - Dave

The Skeehan Family said...

I can attest to the "no, Robyn!" comments from the kids - they are hilarious. And what is that phrase, cute but deadly? beautiful but leathal? I think that's Robyn in a nutshell right now :) I LOVE the pictorials of Taylor - he looks SO happy!

And yay that you are done with the dentist, I go in on Thursday for a checkup. I am so crossing my fingers that they, for the first time in years, won't find anything wrong with my teeth... one can hope, I guess.

Jeremy Hall said...

On the quote - yeah, I actually read something specifically about that quote how it had grown our of Mormon urban lore. Sorry I never thought to pass that along as no longer being "truth" but just a nice sounding story :) I'll have to try and find that statement sometime.

As for the dental woes, I am currently in the avoidance phase, but I need to get in too. Unfortunately us older geezers are getting at that point where all our previous fillings are going bad and have to be replaced. Sucks.