Regan and I Are a Family!!

Shepherd, Regan, and I Are a Family!!!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Tooth Fairy and Letterboxing

Konnor lost his first upper tooth this week. The other one was actually loose, but he was favoring it so much he bit down wrong on a sandwich and this one came out. The picture below is the next day when I pulled his original loose tooth!
I am sad to say that Spring Break is almost over :( Regan is also going to be upset because Konnor is no longer spending every night at our house. For the past week, he has slept at my house so that my mom didn't have to drop him off bright and early every morning on her way to work. Regan loved having him here and tried to convince me that she needed to be with him. For the last evening, she kept trying to sneak into bed with him:

Today, we headed over to Sanibel Island to bike through Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge and enjoy their Earth Day Celebration. As part of the celebration, the were offering free bike rentals. My mom left her bike and used my bike with the pull behind to carry waters and stuff. I had the brilliant idea that I would get a rental bike with a seat so that Regan could sit higher up to see all the nature and wildlife.
Obviously, that was not such a good idea as I fell with the bike about five minutes after getting it. As I was trying to get on! Me being so graceful and coordinated, I didn't realize there were no handbrakes. I tried to get on during an incline and my little petite girl weighed down the back so much we both tipped over. I was trying to engage the hand brakes to help stop us rolling and falling, but obviously that did not work so well as there were no handbrakes to be using! Regan didn't even utter a peep and somehow I managed to bang up my knee even though I landed on my bottom. Leave it to me! Please excuse the lack of make up. I figure that in the 90 degree weather it would melt off anyway, so why bother?We biked over 8 miles and she stayed in the above seat for about 1/2 a mile, the rest of the time she wanted to be in the pull behind. Figures. This area was so beautiful. Here is part of the gang. I'm behind the camera and Doodle was asleep in the pull behind. We tried a new activity today. It is called letter boxing. Letterboxing works like a scavenger hunt. The way it works is that you get together your own kit (Letterbox) that includes a stamp that has meaning to you, a notepad, pen, and a ink pad. You then can then go online at and find hidden letterboxes. They are grouped according to geographic location. You look in your area and print off the clues as to where a letter box is hidden. Once you find a letterbox, you use your stamp to stamp in the notebook that should behidden in the letterbox. You also take the stamp that is in the hidden letterbox and stamp your notebook. You rehide the hidden letterbox so that the next person can find it. Basically, you are collecting stamps in your notebook from all the boxes that you find. You can also look up different areas when you go on vacation. If you want to hide your own letterbox, collect the stamp and notepad in a waterproof box, and you can set up clues on the website Our family is going to each create their own letterbox to hide! We tried it today while we were biking on Sanibel Island and although we didn't have our own kits made (because I wasn't sure we would actually find any boxes), we did have a blast finding the boxes. We found two out of the three we tried. The first one was hidden back in 2005 and probably is just no longer active. We are going to go back next weekend with our own stamps so we can "leave our mark"!!!! One of the clues was a hidden t-shirt that you take your picture with, rehide it for the next person, and then send a picture to the person who hid the t-shirt.
Finding our first letterbox! The kids were so excited. There was a letter, a t-shirt and some stickers. It was hidden by the Sanibel Lighthouse. So much fun!Here is the letter hidden in the box. Two people had already found the letter and stamped their names. Our picture with the t-shirt. We'll have to go back next weekend to stamp a stamp on the letter.
Alex is rehiding the box. This was our second letterbox we found. It was an old 35 mm film case with a letter and a stamp hidden inside. It was hidden on the boardwalk by the lighthouse. It was in a hole in a tree. Doodle and my brother's girlfriend hanging out and watching all the action. My brother is rehiding the canister. I also recently found out about geocaching. Sounds like a blast! If I ever have a GPS system, that is going to be my next adventure!~

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Where Has the Time Gone?

It has been quite the hectic month. At Easter, my ex sister-in-law dropped off my brother's two oldest children. We haven't seen them in almost 10 years because she kept moving them around and changed their last names. They are now living with my mom and it has been quite the adjustment for everybody involved. It hasn't been an easy month. As a mother, I do not understand how you could drop off your children to virtual strangers and walk away. I just don't get it.

Anyway, we are trying to make it work, but it isn't easy. My nephew is changing schools already because his mother didn't mention until he was already in our neighborhood middle school that he had an IEP. Well, the IEP could not be met at the school he has been attending for the last three weeks so yet again, he is having to change schools. We would have tried to get through the rest of the year where he is, but he was failing 5 out of 7 courses with an average grade in the 40s. He just can't keep up and this was after we spent several hours each night trying to help him with homework. What was she thinking?!?!?

Okay, enough of the negative! We have tried to keep busy and have gone to Lakes Park, Sanibel, and a couple of neighborhood parks. The kids love to bike ride and so we have been taking bike rides and that has been good for everybody involved. It is currently spring break and I am just trying to spring clean my house. It is so in need of it! I have no idea how I manage to accumulate so much JUNK! I am also looking for more work as my outpatient patients have all graduated. Good for them, not so good for my bank account! My last patient's mom and I became pretty good friends as we would chat during her son's weekly sessions. I wish there was a home health company that serviced pediatrics in this town. I love home health because you truly get to know the families (both the good and bad!).

Regan continues to amaze me. I love that little girl so much it is unreal! She is really becoming such a little person. Her vocabulary is really coming along and she can hold entire conversations now. It has just "clicked". We played with play-doh yesterday and we are going to keep working on it....she has no idea what to do with it! I feel like I have been depriving my child of one of the basic skills of childhood - play-doh play! She also graduated in her preschool class. I resisted for a long time moving her because she is so desperately attached to her teacher and I hate to move her now, again in the summer for summer camp, and again next school year. Unfortunately, the children in her class were getting younger and younger and Regan was getting bored (according to the director and her teacher). I finally consented when two things happened within a two week period - Regan started sucking her thumb (from a former thumb sucker, I didn't care that she was sucking her thumb as much as I cared that she was mimicking her younger classmates' behaviors). Her behavior was also becoming babylike with more whining, crying, and temper tantrums. The second deciding factor was that she took a real dislike to her new teacher's assistant. I didn't care for her so much myself. She was always negative. Always telling me how she couldn't wait to get home and get away from work. From a parent's stand point, what you are really saying is that you can't wait to get away from my child. Regan also began crying hysterically if she was dropped off in the morning and this assistant was in the class. Her primary teacher doesn't get to work until 9:30 and that is not an option for me to start work at 10! The director got to witness this behavior one morning and had me drop her off in the mornings to a different class, but I wasn't happy with that...she would still have to go be with the assistant during the day. The director would then watch her in the mornings and take her in the afternoons to a different class and said she loved the older class. I said we would try it and I am so glad we did, the first day she went right in, said hi to her new teacher, and joined right into the class. This class is more structured, so hopefully, this will work! Next week will be rough because Doodle never does well with going back to school after a vacation.