Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Kid Art and A Puzzle

On Tuesday I did something very brave. I let my students paint with tempura paints. There was only one spill, one painted shirt and one student with an entire green hand. I think it went fairly well. It took forever to give the directions because they were far more interested in looking at the paint filled cups on their desks then listening to me, but that's a story for another day. I was surfing the internet and found THIS. Cool huh? She had her (ONE) child paint, and actually blend the colors. I LOVE the colors they used too! I would have loved to blend colors with the students, but not this group. I was very afraid to even try the paints, let alone BLENDING them. Instead, we used graph paper and painted boxes in the six colors I put on their tables. I think they are funky looking and fun. I have to hang them up in class still. When I do, I will post a picture-you know you want to see it!
Painting (dotting) in progress. This boy worked very carefully-he always does.
This one is AWESOME! The boy who did this one did a really good job-he has great listening skills, and he's got a good eye for color.
Others...not so much. This one didn't listen to directions. It still has nice color though. She wanted to start over, but I said no (I'm mean that way). It was a good lesson for her as to WHY she needs to listen in class. Plus I only wanted to paint for that 35 minutes and not spend any other days on it. All students were able to finish too.

On a completely different note...
I finished another puzzle....

or did I? This aggravates me to no end. I get it all together, and then end up with a missing piece. 999 pieces and not 1,000. So annoying. I once built a 1,999 piece puzzle (imagine how annoying THAT one was!)

I will be doing a private blog about our adventures with Autism. First I have to have time to get it together. If you are interested in following along, email me juliebeane at yahoo dot com. I am going to make it password protected, and when I figure it out, I'll let you know the password! Good plan. Perhaps this weekend I can get it off the ground. It needs a name though. Ideas? Juliebeane unplugged?

Monday, March 28, 2011


I finally got a chance to sew with my new machine today!
She sews very well. I really need to read the manual because I can't remember half of what the guy told me about the machine.
Using my new machine, I made this dress for Piper.

I made this dress for Arden. I am pleased with both of them. I used a pattern I downloaded off the internet. It had horrible directions so I kind of winged it.

Both boys stayed home from school today, and so did I. The three of us took Riley to the doctor, to have him checked for Strep Throat. He doesn't have that, just a virus. While there, they noticed he was really dehydrated (he wouldn't eat or drink anything because his throat hurt so badly). He came very close to having IV fluids put into him in the doctor's office. She sent us home with directions for Riley to drink lots of fluids, which he did, and he feels better. He'll spend one more day at home tomorrow, and then he'll go back to school on Wednesday.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Sick House

We have had a DAY today. Riley woke up in the wee hours of the morning, complaining of a sore throat. We got him a cough drop and some water, and got him back to sleep. When he woke up at his regular time, he did not feel well at all, and continued to have a sore throat, and also a fever of 103 initially. All of that meant there would be no birthday party today. He was really disappointed. He's looked forward to it, and we always have to have it after his birthday, because we are always waiting on the game schedule for Quinn's baseball. We felt horrible for him. Luckily the laser tag place let us reschedule (for April 17-another wait). We were able to call all of the families and let them know the party was postponed. Ah the joy. Oh but that's not all, because Quinn started to feel worse when he got up, and then he started throwing up. Nice. Oh and then Riley's computer hard drive died. Dead. Kevin spent most of his day at the Genius Bar, Fry's and at home, installing the new hard drive and getting it to work. It's finally up and going, but Riley lost all of his saved stuff. Quinn is much improved but Riley is not. He slept for several hours this afternoon and then went to bed early. I am staying home tomorrow with both boys. Riley gets a trip to the doctor to see if he has Strep Throat.
There was lots of couch sitting today. Quinn and Maya.
Riley and Maya.
Oh yeah, and we cut into the Lego cake. I'll make another one for the rescheduled party. We do not have a freezer big enough to freeze it, so we figured we may as well eat it. We do have quite a lot of cake products in the house, so I think I'll take some to school to share. Teachers are always hungry.

Kevin and the furniture shredder and house pottier. That dog has done nothing but crap and pee in the house, with all the rain we've had. It's daily. It's driving me nuts. She apparently doesn't like the rain-hey many of us don't, but we know where it's appropriate to potty.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Cake and Stuff

Baseball was rained out again today. Since the season started, we've only been able to play one game. We were supposed to have a make-up game yesterday, but that got rained out too. I think the rain is about to end-I certainly hope so. We've had enough. Anyway, so we got another Saturday at home, which is good. The bad thing is that both boys are sick. Riley stayed home from school yesterday-he had a slight fever by mid afternoon, and felt yucky. This morning he felt much better, no fever all day, just a horrible cough. Quinn on the other hand has a pretty high fever-it was 102.1 this afternoon. He's had a fever off and on all day, and has spent most of the day on the couch. Poor guy. What's even worse though is that Riley's birthday party is tomorrow. We are taking some of his friends to play laser tag. I don't think Quinn will be able to attend though, which means the two friends he invited also won't attend. Poor Quinn. I feel really badly for him. We are not a lucky household lately.
I spent some time making this bracelet today. I made the buttons (fabric buttons from a fabric button kit-you can get them at Jo-Ann's), and then I glued them onto these flat pieces, and attached them with jumprings. Easy peasy.
Here's Quinn and his trusty friend-the dog. Although I think the iPad could be considered a trusty friend too, especially when one doesn't feel that great. You can see his pink fever cheeks. He did put more clothing on later in the day. Both boys have complained that the house is cold. Riley's in bed now, with three blankets over him.
Riley felt so good that we had him clean his room. It is much improved. It was a wreck before.
Kevin made cupcakes.
Kevin made a cake.
I used my giant bottle of green food coloring (whew-good thing I had enough) to color the frosting...
...and then turned Kevin's creations into a giant Lego cake for Riley's party tomorrow. I cut the tops off of the cupcakes and then put them upside down onto the frosted cake. Frosting those cupcakes, with their crumbly sides, was no easy task, but I got it done. I'm happy with the outcome. That boy loves his Legos.

Prepared for tomorrow. I used the cupcake tops and made them into big frosting-filled cookies. I'll let Quinn eat those, since he won't be able to join us tomorrow. Poor Quinn. I am sure Grandma will treat him extra special. Hopefully he'll feel better tomorrow.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I may need to build an ark in my backyard. It's rained so much. I think we are all feeling a little sick of the rain. Today was the worst. Horrible storm. It rained all day. I was on a field trip with 24 of my students. It was soggy, but the worst part was when we returned to school. We made it to the classroom in moderate rain. Lunch came along and I sent the kids over. It POURED during lunch. Today was also Spring Picture Day (oh yes it was), and we were scheduled at 1:00. Our lunch ends at 12:45, so another teacher and I decided to just stay in the lunch room with our classes and wait for our turn-no sense taking them back to class only to turn around and bring them back to the same place. The kids had lunch boxes, jackets, and umbrellas. We moved the kids up toward the stage, to the front tables, as our cranky janitor began to clean the back tables. We were still there when he reached the front tables and proceeded to throw the kids' belongings onto the wet, filthy floor. Nice. I was trying to pick up items, off another table, and pile them under the stage, keeping them separate from the other 5 classes in the room, when he up-ended the table (they fold up, like a mountain and then down again to fit into their space), while I was taking stuff off. This brought all of the rest of the items crashing to the floor. Double nice. I expressed this to him. Nothing. Crickets. That man is such an ass. We all wish he could get fired. Some janitors are excellent-the one we had until this guy came back (he keeps leaving and coming back), was awesome, just awesome. We LOVED him. Anyway, super annoying day with the rain, weather, hyper students and a cranky janitor. I have no idea when the rain will stop.

Here's some art from Quinn. He drew everything except for the big headed boy. His friend drew that for him. Cute huh? I keep offering him drawing classes, but he is resisting. Said he only likes to draw Pokemon, not "culture stuff." LOL. Alrighty then.
Isn't she sweet? I had myself another shopping pity party. This is Thumpty Thump. She was a really great deal, and she's very original, which is why I decided I had to have her. Plus Stanford (actually Lucile Packard Autism Center) is flaking again. We had a phone interview scheduled with them for Wednesday morning. I rearranged and switched preps so that I could take the call, and Kevin rearranged work stuff and came to school so we could have the interview together. They didn't call. Nice. BUT, they did call today...while I was on my field trip. They were wondering if I was free to talk. My response, "No, I'm on a field trip with my students. I was free to talk YESTERDAY when we had this scheduled." She said they would call later today, at 4. Guess what? They didn't call. That's twice now, plus the three phone messages I've left that they never responded to. Seriously, for a renowned hospital, they keep dropping the ball. Have I mentioned that there is a 9 month wait for testing? Every time they mess up, puts us further behind. It's so irritating.

So yeah, after all of the stress of today, and the past month, I'm happy with my new girl. Would be even happier to get some things settled though, but she's a pretty good distraction.

She's going to need a name. Ideas????

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Completely Random

Here are some completely random pictures of the goings on around here.
We made fossils in class yesterday. I like to use the air-drying clay. It's simple and the kids are able to work easily with it.
We had a lesson about Ireland last week, at school-a parent run enrichment program. The kids got to make these aluminum/tin art pictures. They could use traditional Celtic designs or make their own. I like this one. It looks like snowflakes.
I started a new puzzle.
I finished it the same night. It was easy. 500 pieces and lots of color patterns. I have a 2000 piece puzzle, but I need a bigger area to build it.

Luck has not been on my side lately, so I had a pity shopping party for myself this evening. I bought these four fake cupcakes, that green bird dish, and a box of really cute Easter "gem mix," which consists of glass gem drops and little wooden eggs.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Playing With Dolls and Crafting

Because of the horrible storm we are having, Quinn's baseball game was cancelled today. I think all of the baseball games were cancelled today. It has rained and rained and rained, and it's really windy. Yesterday our entire school district was locked down for awhile due to tornado warnings! Crazy weather. I don't even think I can see the big supermoon out tonight because it's so cloudy. Oh well, the cancellation of baseball today was not the end of the world. I was able to stay home almost all day!
I played with dolls. This is Piper, wearing a wig.
Arden, looking cute in green.
My Instagram picture of both girls. Do you have that app? It's super cool.
The dog and cat sharing the couch. Maya is staring at the rain and Owen is indifferent.
I made a bracelet for my BFF's birthday.
I made another one for me. All buttons are from Tessa Ann of Etsy.
I turned a box that started out like this...

...into this. I got the idea from HERE. Sorry for the blurry pictures. I think my camera is not working as well as it used to. It used to take rather decent pictures inside, and now I am struggling with it.

Today is my BFF's birthday, a bunch of us girls went to dinner (enjoyed yummy Margaritas), then went to see Hall Pass with Owen Wilson. It had some funny parts.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The White House and Organization

I feel like my poor blog is suffering. I think my posts have not been that exciting. I haven't crafted anything in forever-maybe this weekend. I am laying low. We have a late baseball game for Quinn on Saturday, but I am not doing anything else. Life has been very interesting lately, and not so much in a good way. Frustration has been the word of the last few months. We are still working diligently on getting things figured out for Riley-it's proving quite difficult. Things at the Jr. High level are WAY different than what we (teachers) do at the elementary level, in terms of helping kids. I have learned that my district is just not equipped to handle intelligent, high functioning autistic kids. There's really no services for them. It's very annoying. We were able to get a few (and literally it's a FEW) accommodations for Riley. I guess I should be happy with that, but kinda, I'm not. I am considering a private blog, about my "adventures" in dealing with this. Any feedback about that?
Riley built his White House (he's ready for our extended family summer trip to DC). Of course, Mr. President needed to be by his house.
I have reorganized Riley's school backpack this week. I bought a dry erase calendar so that he could put down due dates of projects, papers and assignments, and keep track of outside activities.
New folders, all labeled outside...
...and inside.

A nice tidy backpack!

I hope you all have a fantastic Friday tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Lucky #13

It's a big day around here! It's Riley's birthday and he's 13! 13!!!! I am now the mother of a teenager. OMG. Where does the time go? I don't feel a day over 30!
We had dinner at Red Robin-Riley's choice. Riley opened presents. He scored big time! This gift was from Quinn. It's Dicecapades, a game with 100 dice. This is right up Riley's alley.
Next up, a free Lego set that came with the White House Architect set we got him.
The next gift. What on earth could this be???? It's such a unique shape.
It's a Zelda DS game-0ne that's not being made any longer. I bought a used copy off of Amazon, because I didn't want to pay the almost $60 for a new one!

Since the restaurant is at the mall, the boys had their DSis with them. After dinner they went to Gamestop to try and download some special Pokemon for their new Black and White games. They weren't successful, but they did find the (apparently) very rare Ruby Pokemon Gameboy game-TWO of them in fact. They each bought one, and seemed very happy with their purchases. So much for saving their money for our summer trip!

Sunday, March 13, 2011


Quinn and I went to a birthday party today. My friend's little boy turned 4. It feels like forever since I had kids that little. It was fun to watch them.
Quinn, king of the playground.
Enjoying Doritos. What a cheesy mess.

After the birthday party, Quinn and I headed to Campbell. Riley and Kevin met us there. We were to watch our nieces in a movie they filmed during their film camp. Due to technical difficulties, the show was cancelled. We had dinner at the Rockbottom Brewery, and then went home.

I really have no idea what Quinn's vision for this picture was. We just go with it.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

We are Ready for Some Baseball!

Today was Opening Day for our little league. It was a beautiful day. We had a rough start, but it ended up being a very nice, actually WARM, day at the field.
Yo! Quinn is a River Bandit this season. He's number 1-no seriously, he IS player #1.
The team parading onto the field-see? Quinn's #1.
Watching the festivities. Note Quinn (#1).
Beautiful green hills!
Quinn scored a run-that's his red helmet behind the catcher.
He's apparently a little happy with his run.
Up to bat. He was two for two today. Two singles.
On base, in his running man stance.

After the game, Riley got a haircut.
Riley before his haircut. Looking mighty scruffy.
And after. Ahhh, much better! It must be so light that he could smile with teeth showing for this picture!