Monday, July 30, 2012

What a Week for Delirious Mom!

This past week has been jam-packed with activity on the Crazy Train!  The word whirlwind comes to mind.  I don't know how so much could possibly happen in one week, and happen so painlessly at that.  (I should probably knock on wood right about now! *rapping on my head with my knuckles*)  I just give you a brief recap of the week, with the little funny bits that deserve mentioning added in.

Posing for a photo op: Prince Charming, Princess & Birdie
No one looks particularly enthusiastic about the camera.

Monday:  The Crazy Train took a ride to The Natural History Museum, accompanied by Princess's future husband and mother-in-law.  We had an absolutely nerdy blast and stayed over 4 hours.  Four hours, people!  That's like a year in being-social-and-on-the-spectrum time.  No one was more surprised than P's future MIL and me-- we both kind of figured we'd spend more time in the car than at the museum.  We had no drama, no meltdowns, and no security issues.  The only fallout from the whole event happened hours later at home.  Birdie briefly worried that her stuffed dog could possibly have gotten cancer from the full-body x-ray he received during the security check at the Ronald Reagan Building.  Once I showed her the "cancerous spot" was really just a piece of black paper stuck to her stuffy's ear, all was well in Birdie-Land again.

Friday, July 27, 2012

This Week's Hairbrained Musings (9)

Another week of moments and musings.

*The paperwork you have to fill out, and the orientation sessions you have to attend when starting a new job are designed to weed out the weak!  I mean, seriously-- if you still want to work for public schools after watching the blood-born pathogens video, you're either crazy or REALLY love your job.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


I have really awesome news, Crazy Trainees!! 

Drum roll, please... 

I am being published by the Scary Mommy herself-- the one and only Jill Smokler-- on her website! Woo Hoo!

*lots of giddy happy-dancing going on at my house right now*

For those of you unfamiliar with Scary Mommy, this is one awesome blog by one funny lady that takes a very honest, in-your-face look at motherhood.  Jill has recently published a book entitled Confessions of a Scary Mommy and she has an enormous online community of mommies that share with and support one another.  Jill publishes a series on that she refers to as her Society Posts, which are written by guest bloggers.  Yours truly-- moi-- is this week's guest blogger! *some cabbage patchin', then the running man, a little sprinkler action-- ooooohhhh, yeeeaaaahhh!*


This is truly a very big, bloggy honor, and I hope that you will click on the link below and read my latest article "What a Waste". I feel like getting my article printed here is a MAJOR accomplishment and compliment.  :)

Give Scary Mommy, AND ME, a like on Facebook too, while you're at it-- if you haven't already.  Wouldn't you just love to get more Crazy in your Facebook NewsFeed?!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Birdie's SPED Evaluation & Eligibility

You may recall that back in May, I referred Birdie for special education services (<--see the post about this here) at school.  Although it wasn't fun, it was necessary, and Birdie was approved to be evaluated for services.

The series of evaluations began almost immediately, and for those of you with children that receive special services, you know how long this process can take.  Birdie was observed in the classroom, to get eyewitness accounts of her difficulties handling some of the "constructs of a typical learning environment".  She was evaluated by an educational diagnostician, who basically assesses and diagnoses learning difficulties of students, using a battery of tests and interviews.  Birdie was given a psyche evaluation, which is more tests and interviews.  I was interviewed.  Birdie's medical history was required, which included listing all Birdie's missed milestones, medical issues, and relatives with any sort of mental health issues.

Can you say "probed"?!  That's how you feel at the end of all this.  Probed.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

This Week's Hairbrained Musings (8)

Another week of musings and moments.

*The last thing you ever want to admit to yourself is that your kids drive you crazy because they are so much like you.  Therefore, I refuse to admit this.  Denial is better.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Understood Rules

Yesterday was a horribly disagreeable day here on the Crazy Train.  The day started off rocky, and continued at a consistently bumpy cadence the rest of the day.  For whatever reason-- the alignment of the stars, the toss of the dice, the smell of the laundry hamper (your guess is as good as mine!)-- peace was not to be had between Princess and Birdie.

The civil unrest began shortly after breakfast, when I went out to get my morning exercise.  (We have a sidewalk loop right in front of our townhouse where I try walk a mile or two each morning.)  The girls declined my invitation to come out an play while I walked, stating that they were "in the middle of THE most awesome story show ever and didn't have time."  Whatever.  They were getting along nicely, so I let it go.

Twenty minutes into my walk, just as I was getting to the good part of the Harry Potter book I'm reading, Birdie came charging out the front door.  She let the whole neighborhood know that "Sissy tried to strangle me with her bare hands!  TWICE!"

Vicious, aren't they?  (borrowed image)

Great.  "So what did you do to cause that reaction, Birdie?"  Guess I'll finish my walk later.

"Uhhhhhh, nothing?!"  She said this like it was a question.  Which meant the answer was decidedly not "nothing".

Versatile Blogger Award

I know you guys are tired of hearing about my awesomeness, but I just don't care!  ;)  Story of a Girl nominated me for The Versatile Blogger award, and dang it-- I'm gonna take a minute and embarrass myself toot my own horn.  Again.  Hey-- at least you're learning all sorts of strange and interesting things about the Conductor of the Crazy Train.  That has to be good for something!  (Blackmail, possibly?) 

Sunday, July 15, 2012


Summer has had its highs and lows for Princess and Birdie, as expected.  When spectrum-y kids go from a highly structured daily schedule like school, to a loosely scheduled, mostly by-the-seat-of-your-pants daily routine, things are bound to be unpleasant at times.  I know I could make life more predictable for them, scheduling every moment of every day if I wanted, but (and it's a very big but) I feel I would be doing them a disservice if I did.  My little ladies have to learn flexibility and adaptability somehow, and honestly, school isn't always the best place for that.

Princess trying to look happy about the 100º weather, Birdie-- not trying

As much as it pains me to do it, I intentionally sabotage our day on occasion (not much, but some) in order for the girls to "practice" dealing with things not going their way.  I may rearrange the events on our Summer Schedule, for instance, and do Wednesday's activity on Monday-- "accidentally".  I may get to the library a few minutes before it opens so that we have to wait to get in. *gasp*  I may offer mac & cheese for lunch, only to "discover" we don't have any in the pantry.  I may invade their ever-sacred personal space without asking, or "accidentally bump into" one of them, so that they have to practice dealing with unauthorized contact appropriately.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

This Week's Hairbrained Musings (7)

Another week of moments and musings...

*An 8-hr car trip with two very unenthusiastic 8 year-old passengers is the stuff drinking-problems are made of.  It may also be the precursor to a straight jacket and a thorazine drip.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Liebster Blog Lovin'

The blogging community is so supportive and encouraging.  Bloggers of all creeds, races, and walks of life come together to encourage, comfort, and support one another in their bloggy endeavors.  There is always copious amounts of love to be had in the blogosphere!

One way bloggers show their love and support is through the Liebster award, which is a lovely token of appreciation from one blogger to 11 others, to let them know they have "put together a pretty great blog."  The Liebster is specifically for blogs with less than 200 followers-- which makes it the perfect way to showcase the new kids on the bloggy block.  :)

Laura from Stroller Parking Only sent me the Liebster love, and I couldn't be more humbled.  Laura is from Canada, and is the mother of one infant and one labrador retriever.  She is direct, honest, and hilarious, and if you haven't yet visited her blog, then I insist you do soon.  You won't be sorry!  :)

Thursday, July 12, 2012

To Infinity and Beyond!

How do we manage to have such dorky conversations at the dinner table?!

Tonight, we were talking about how Brussel sprouts, cabbage and broccoli are all cruciferous vegetables (don't laugh yet-- it gets dorkier), even though they seem so different.  What makes them cruciferous, Princess wondered.  I explained that they are all related because the flowers on the plants have four petals that resemble a cross, thus "cruciferous", which is Latin for cross-like.  Princess didn't like this explanation.  "A flower shouldn't make them RELATED.  Broccoli rocks, but cabbage and Brussel sprouts suck!  I mean it!  That's just dumb."

He does look dumb...
"You want to talk about dumb", said Birdie, "then let's discuss Buzz Lightyear for a minute.  (So she was the one that left the Toy Story DVD lying in the floor earlier... hmmm.)  That idiot likes to use the phrase 'to infinity and beyond!'  Like there is anything beyond infinity!  It's infinity because we don't know where it ends!  Duh."

(I warned you it would get dorkier.  Doesn't everyone talk about cruciferous vegetables and infinity with their little ones?  I say make each moment a dorky teachable moment.)

This was not the first time the subject of infinity has come up at the dinner table.  About three weeks ago, the whole family had discussed the idea of infinity to some extent over dinner.  The whole conversation made my brain hurt, and I was glad when it was over.  I should have known it wasn't over for good.  Things have a way of getting repeated again and again around here.  I'd say it's like deja vu, but it isn't as baffling as that.  My kids just cannot let things go.  Ever.  Even when you think they finally have.  It takes very little to revive a long-forgotten topic-- like seeing the Toy Story DVD, for example.  That was all it took to set my expert conversational-track-jumper into action, making the leap from cabbage to infinity in a single bound.  

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

"Corn Dog"

This handsome fur baby is my Buddy.  You may recognize him from my weekly Hairbrained Musings posts.  He is a bit of a local celebrity here on the Crazy Train.  He is the funniest, most ridiculous, most loving, most(ly) well-behaved (he is still a pup at 17mo) dog a girl could ask for.  He is also completely and undeniably stupid-- sometimes.

Dammit-- I AM smiling!!  YOU say "cheese" and I might look more excited.

Being a pup, Buddy still does "puppy stuff", like getting hyper for a few minutes and running around like a nut, or occasionally peeing in an "inconvenient" place (like on my mom's couch-- sorry Mom).  He gets a little "frisky" sometimes, too.  Especially around sweaty women-- and me.  (Notice I don't count myself in with the sweaty women, no matter what may be true.)  It's gross and funny all at the same time, the way Buddy will sit at your feet and whine with "desire" right before he jumps up on the couch and tries to make your shoulder his bitch.  Now that I think of it, it's actually gross and sad... oh, what am I saying?!  It's freakin' hilarious!  But I do hope that one day he outgrows his amorous side, or at the very least adjusts his sexual preferences to not include me.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

I Got Tagged!

Woo hoo!  Go me-ee, go me-ee! 

I'd like to take a moment to thank the academy, and all those important people in my life that helped make this happen... *hehe*  

My bloggy friend Diane at Our Adventures with Riley chose me for my first blog award, and I am so flattered!  Somebody thinks I'm fabulous!  What fun!  I'm pretty sure this is an honor, right?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Big Day in Small Town NC

My girls have spent the last couple of July 4ths at our house in the suburbs of Virginia.  This year for Independence Day, however, I packed up my car and drove south to the small town in North Carolina where I grew up, and where my folks still live.  Now that they are old enough to really enjoy it, I thought it was high time Princess and Birdie experience this holiday of patriotism, greasy grilled food, and amateur pyrotechnic displays in a place and way that I recall fondly from my youth.  I think that they are really happy that we did.

We started our day bright and early with my home town's "Big Day" celebration, which kicked off with a parade.

Birdie waiting for the parade to start

The lead unit in the parade, right after the
police car escort and the National Guard color guard

Sunday, July 1, 2012

What Makes Us Different

Image courtesy of University of North Texas Dept of Biological Sciences

As I have mentioned before, Birdie and Princess are identical twins.  Recently, Birdie has really been fixated on and fascinated by the fact that her sister is called her "identical twin", and yet there are many differences between them.  Being very literal in speech, every time this comes up, Birdie is really bugged by the discrepancy.  The fact that she and Princess have the same genetic material-- which is supposed to define you-- and yet they are so very different really drives Birdie's need to understand how DNA works.  I have not wanted to get into a huge amount of detail with her about the mechanics of genetics-- mainly because I am pretty sure I would run out of info before she was satisfied.  We have, however, talked a tiny bit about how a baby's womb environment can change its DNA expression.  She was not impressed by this explanation, and has apparently given the whole identical DNA thing a lot of thought.

Last week, Birdie and I had the following conversation: