Friday, January 29, 2010

Winter Earns His First Badge and Beads as a Tiger Scout

I've been trying to stress to my eldest son the importance of work in our lives.  Trying to make him understand that we all have to work in order to receive those priviledges we hold so dear (ie-new things, playing on the computer, video games, a new car...etc.).  Last night I think the message might have hit home when he received his first badge and beads from the Scouts (unfortunately I forgot to take the camera with me to the meeting, so this picture is pre-badge).

Winter struggles socially sometimes and has been diagnosed with both Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD--sometimes called Sensory Integration Disorder) and Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS).  Not that I put too much stock in those labels, to me they are a tool only to assist me, and others, better understand how my son's little mind works.

I was really nervous about the Pack Meeting (for anyone not involved with scouting, that's when all of the various groups: Tiger-Scouts, Wolf-Scouts, Webelos, and Boy Scouts, etc. in your area, come together for an event or meeting), since Winter suffers from hyperaucusis (he has super-good hearing!) being in large groups can sometimes be a challenge, especially if there's singing, or a lot of loud clapping, confusing laughter, etc.  But I needn't have worried, Winter did excellent.  He sat right next to our Den-leader, and I sat "far-away" on the bleachers, to watch the Pack and Den-leaders' demonstrations, and the boys receive their awards, badges, pins, beads, etc.  Winter was so small when he went up to receive his, but so proud when he came running to show me what he'd earned.

Getting ready for this meeting was the first time he'd shown so much excitement about the Scouts.  When we first began he was disappointed to find out that he would have to work at the meetings, he began to resist going, but we persevered and last night I think he realized the pay-off for all his hard work.  Hopefully this lesson will stick with him into other areas of his life (say--school-work??).

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I'm Back!

Okay, so I haven't done so well with this whole blogging thing.  But one of my many New Years' goals (I don't like to call them resolutions), is to become a regular blogger.  You know--like-posting regularly.  So I am here today to say that I am back with renewed determination to rekindle my blog.  Yay!

I have a whole list of New Year's Goals this year, but the theme that runs consistently throughout all of them, is this desire to get in the habit of certain routines.  I am a creature of habit, personally.  My eldest son, "Winter", is very much the same.  Winter needs a lot of structured routines, and I am realizing that I have a lot of those same basic needs.  So this year's theme is ROUTINE.

Routines are important for many reasons.  It takes some of the chaos out of life, children like the predictable nature of a routine and function better.  A lot of the research I pulled in preparation for this New Year's goals talked about children and routines, but I think that even adults need routines; pets certainly like to be fed on a routine-basis, and isn't this whole world built upon routines (weather cycle, seasonal-cycle, orbitational cycle, etc.)?  So, I put forth that routines are important for all life, and for you, too.

It can be hard to get in the habit of those new routines though.  I made routines for everything (I made up charts for myself, and routine-charts for Winter that utilized a pec/image system), routines for the chores, routines for the meal-planning, routines for homeschool, and routines for the kids.  I have a routine in place for my garden, and a very specific system (which I will go into more detail about as garden-season approaches).  I have routines for my writing, and routines for the childrens' personal hygiene.  Okay, so this may be a bit extreme for most folks, but you get the idea.

All of these routines serve one purpose for me:  they organize my time, to allow me to be as productive as possible.  In this way I can make the most of my days.