Friday, June 13, 2008

School's Out

Four weeks.

I have one week scheduled for Vacation Bible School. That may be an adventure in and of itself. So that leaves me with three weeks.

How much life can I pack into three weeks? How many trips to the beach, the museum, the farm, the mountains, the zoo? Will I be able to afford the gasoline to get there?

How many mornings can I spend by our backyard pool? How many afternoons can be spent at Grandma's?

How do I get a handle on the time, so it doesn't just slip away?

Then both boys go back to school for half-days. Andy goes to camp for four weeks. Joey goes back to school for six. Then we have another week off before school starts back up in earnest- a 4-year-old preschooler and a first grader.


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Rest in Peace, Officer Bahr

The funeral for Officer Todd Bahr was today.

Officer Bahr was killed in the line of duty on Friday, shot in the head, probably by a man who was later killed in a shoot-out with police (the police didn't kill him; the coward* shot himself). For some places, the idea of a shoot-out might be a daily, no-longer-newsworthy occurrence. Here, it is a shock beyond comprehension.

We haven't lost an officer in the line of duty since 1964.

Mom wanted to see the procession, and I thought it was a good idea. I hadn't pulled Joey from school, but I thought Andy should see it. The escort of mounted officers... the lines of officers from all over the region, both Virginia and Maryland... the emergency vehicles. Two ambulance drivers who were not able to go to the funeral stopped at the roadside with us (and several dozen other cars) to see the procession, to take photos and footage for their comrades who remained on call. The entrance to the cemetery was flanked by fire engines, their ladders up to hold the flag directly over the entrance. The procession took about 45 minutes to pass (we didn't get to see the whole thing- only about 1/2 an hour).

I agree with mom- I think they should have closed schools and lined the route, had the children watch the display of respect and mourning for this person.

Police officers put their lives on the line for us every day, so we can be protected, we can be helped, we can have someone to turn to when trouble strikes. Every child in this city should have seen what this means when an officer is killed. They should have stood there and shown their respect, they should see the lives and families who risk everything, every day, so they can go to safe schools, ride on safe streets, walk on safe sidewalks. They should see how precious a single life is and can be.

I am sorry I never met Officer Bahr- at least not knowingly. I thank him and his family for their efforts and sacrifice in keeping my community safe.

May we never have such a procession again.

*If it proves to be, as we all suspect, that this person really is the person who murdered Officer Bahr, please substitute any and all deragatory terms of choice here. This is a family site, but we invite you to use your own imagination.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

More thoughts on our bakesale book

Thought I had forgotten, eh?

No, I've been up late at night contemplating ways to make this work. Publishing a book is no real problem- my mom publishes books, and we do an on-demand printing. Then we can all use the book for fundraising for our particular projects. To raise the funds for set-up, we can sell the book via Amazon. We just need to agree on a price. That can't be set until we know some specifics: How many pages will it be? Paperback or hardback? What size- do we want it to be more like 8X5, or more like 11x9?

Then we need content, of course. And lots of it- but not so much that we can't do a volume 2! Do we want to do a regular book, with main dishes, side dishes, and desserts? Do we want specialty sections, such as special diets and special needs recipes? Do we want to break it up so that this first book is main dishes, a second volume of side dishes, a third volume of desserts? Do we want to do a general book now, and then if it takes off, do specialty volumes?

I figure to put in a recipe(s?), you just send it to me with your name, and possibly some extra information for marketing- like the disability your child has, what you are raising funds for (would need to be long-term projects, such as saving for adult services or long-term therapies), perhaps descriptions of some of the therapies that work for your family? Also, some artwork would be a good idea. Black-and-white lineart is best with the on-demand system (as opposed to photos).

We can then order books when we are doing a fundraiser (like our big bakesale... that still needs to be organized!) or just take orders for them, and not have boxes and boxes of them laying about.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Floor Dwellers

Andy and Joey both love to step on things.

I'm sure its a sensory thing, extra pressure and texture on the bottoms of their feet. They are not picky about what it under their feet; they seem to be absently pressing their feet onto the objects. Often they stand in the middle of the floor, absorbed in their little worlds (or the TV), with something under their feet. I usually have to tell them to stop stepping on whatever it is.

Joey often steps on things because his motor planning is poor. It take a lot of extra planning to lift your foot and place it on the floor somewhere other than your natural gait. It also is tricky to be watching the floor while you are trying to plan out where your body intends to go and hurdle your body in the exactly correct direction.

What I am talking about is different. This is a deliberate action, a purposeful, slow, planned stepping on an object.

this becomes a real problem when the object they are stepping on is not intended to take any weight. Like metal buses, fishing poles, pens, blocks. Either we end up with broken toys, or broken feet.

I may take up massaging their feet.