Saturday, March 27, 2010

Let's Play Ball!

Joey had his first Little League Challengers Baseball game today! He was fabulous!

Everybody gets to hit, everybody goes around the bases, and everybody gets to field. And we as parents all get to cheer!

It was absolutely lovely to see Joey having such a fabulous time.

Joey was so excited to get and throw the ball, and to hit the ball and run the bases. All the kids were incredible!

I recommend Challengers; everybody had so much fun!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Hi, Stimey!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Judgments Aside

Sometimes, when I am out with the guys, I get the feeling of being in a fishbowl. People sometimes notice my kids are different. Sometimes people look at Joey askance. Am I dreaming it? Am I over-sensitive? Is it just me?

And every time I start thinking, maybe it is just me, I find stuff like this.** And it isn't just the post- its the preponderance of comments supporting the post. It's not just one person being ignorant and judgmental, it's a whole crowd of them, who think it's funny. The point about teaching kids manners? I'm all over it. Making fun of someone who is teaching those manners, simply because they are in the middle of the lesson instead of at the end of it? Not. Cool.

And it is one of the reasons we don't go to the library much, to be honest. After all, Joey does a similar thing- he notes his small steps to success. "I'm being patient, Mom!" "Look, Mom, I am keeping my hands to myself!" "Mom! I am being nice to my brother!"

But let's leave that aside, and instead come to the park with me and the guys. The sun is warm, there are people laughing, kids playing. A young woman, somewhere in her teen years, comes up to Joey and waves for him to follow her. The way she holds her hands, her head, the over-extension of her joints, her difficulty with speech, all speak of special needs. Joey doesn't understand, I prompt him that the girl wants to play with him. They start a game of tag.

Some other young ladies, these girls may be fifteen, join in. The girl likes to tickle people. We tickle back. She likes Andy's new toy, and they play with it for a while, before he is distracted by another boy his own age. There is more tag, some hide-and-seek. Joey goes over to a bench where two moms are parked with their toddlers, and they let him play with a baby doll with their daughter. There is more running, some frisbee-tossing attempts, more tag, more tickling.

Are people thinking less of this young lady because she doesn't follow social rules? Because she flaps her hands, wants to play tag, likes to squeal when a dog barks? No, even the other teenagers here just join into the fun. Are people thinking less of my Joey, even though they can tell his speech in unusual, his social skills not quite on par? No, they let him be himself and join into the fun.

Compassion is a wonderful thing; acceptance is far more fun; and sunshine is for everybody to share and share alike. Everybody wins.

**Edit: If you really need to see the original post and comments, I have a PDF of the original post and comments, which have been removed from the original link. Or you can recall the original Google cached document yourself. But I don't recommend it. It really is depressing.

***Edit edit: Read this one instead. It's much better.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Rainy Day Games

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Sending you to the garden for a little bit of spring.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Planting Seeds

It's been Garden Week here in JoeyWorld and AndyLand, and we have been working on our garden. I got it turned over Friday, so we were ready to go! Woo-hoo! So we took a trip to the garden center.

The big attraction at the garden center is not the gardens. It's the fish. They used to have a beautiful, lovely fish pond in one of the green houses, but I guess they got tired of being a favorite rainy-day activity and have moved everything outside. Oh, and expanded to a larger pond with more fish. After our fish adventures, I can't imagine folks spending huge money on outdoor ponds with carp, but maybe they are easier than indoor aquariums. Or whatever.

The boys cooed over the new fish pond and the fish, and then Andy ran around the back to look at the trees. He wanted to know what some of them were, but I expect he'll be more interested when they really start flowering and leafing. They were more interested in running through the narrow aisles, touching the different barks, and singing. Yes, indeed. Spring is here.

Then came time to Pick Out Seeds. Its still the first breaths of spring, and we're not usually ready this early to get planting, so we had to explain the concept of Spring Seeds and Summer Seeds. We can't plant squash or pumpkins right now, we have to plant things like turnips, spinach, and swiss chard. That sort of thing. Andy selected lettuce, Joey decided on carrots, and I got turnips (well, the boys decided I would get turnips). I sprung for the overpriced organic seed packets instead of trying to explain the them the concept of bulk seed, since we were using the little packets to explain the kinds of vegetables we could plant. Besides, it's helping the economy, right? And this was a local store, not a big chain thing.

Anyway, we proudly got to plant our garden yesterday. We had made an attempt at the park, but Andy cut his foot pretty badly (but not a stitches situation), so we went home early and got our garden planted instead. Now, our garden is only about 4 feet long and 2 feet wide, so I divided it into zones, which the boys designated colors. Andy is Zone Red, with his lettuce seed. Joey is Zone Green with his carrots. And I am Zone Yellow, with the turnips. I had each of them plant their own seeds. Andy got to spread his and lightly pat the soil over them. Joey got to do rows, which he found really exciting, since it involved digging with a stick. Then I let them both spread mine, and pat them in.

It rained over night a little, and is supposed to rain today. Wish us luck!