Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving Themed Homeschool Activities

So for the past week and a half we have been doing Thanksgiving themed activities. In his journal every day we did "playschool" Little Man had to draw and write something he was thankful for. Well, we went through "dump truck" and "digger" and "garbage truck" and "bulldozer" and finally today, I pushed him to pick something that wasn't a toy. You know what he picked? His sister! I love this little guy!

We've gotten these activities from a few different places. I didn't want Little Man to miss out on adding a sight word to his repertoire, so after looking at these two books by This Reading Mama in her Thanksgiving Pack, I decided his word would be "have," as the sight words in the first book ("I See Thanksgiving") were "I," "see," "a," and numbers and the sight words in the second book ("A Thankful Heart") were "I" and "have."

So, being this word is on the primer Dolch word list, I had to do some digging for things to do with it. Thankfully some of my favorite sites had things:

Other reading activities we did were from 3 Dinosaurs. We did a beginning sound worksheet:

And a word family sorting activity:

We also did this great activity with pictures. Little Man had to decipher the picture "code" and write the first letter on the line. They all spelled out CVC words which he could then sound out. The only thing I wish was that she hadn't used "cider" for C. It initially confused him and he tried to say "sat" instead of "cat." But he eventually figured it out.

We also did a missing letter activity. I'm glad this one wasn't just the alphabet like the pumpkin themed one. It really challenged Little Man. There was also a missing number one as well. Again, another challenge for him.

We also did some math activities. One of the easier ones was the finding which one was different.

We then have started on adding (or as the Common Core Standards call it "composing and decomposing numbers"). There are two photos of the same activity. We did it two different ways, and will probably continue to do this one over the course of the next few months. The first way we did it was where Little Man picked two different foods and put how ever many he wanted out on the mat. He then had to put the correct number on the lines. He then counted up all the pictures and put the correct answer on the line.

The second way we did it was I put the numbers on the lines and he had to put the correct number of whatever food he wanted and then add them up. I tried to stick to under 10 until he wanted to do 10 +10. So of course we did that one, just because.

We also did a worksheet that was very similar to what we did.

Pretty much, that was our past two weeks. Our Bible verse was
"Be thankful to Him and bless His name." -- Psalm 100:4b.
So it was appropriate for it being Thanksgiving.

Printables We Used Can Be Found Here:
1 +1 +1 =1
Sight Words Color By Number

3 Dinosaurs
Sight Word Printables
Thanksgiving Pack

This Reading Mama
Thanksgiving Pre-K/K Pack

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Some Days...

Some days are harder than others. I know this isn't news to a lot of you. But sometimes I just want to go on vacation. Being a single mom wears on you. Having a special needs child wears on you. Today was one of those days. Well, actually it was like the whole weekend.

It started because Little Man was going to his dad's. We technically don't have custody orders, but he has been going every other weekend. After just talking to him, it always makes me uneasy. Probably because we don't have orders and he is trying to fight me with what time he brings Little Man back. And of course, he doesn't even ask about Princess. He brought Little Man's play house that he got for Christmas near his first birthday. He told me that he cleaned it up because he thought Princess would need it soon. Yes, Princess is 7 and a half months old, but she's not rolling over all the way, nor is she sitting up. She's nowhere near ready to crawl. In fact, that's one of the things I would hope she is doing by her first birthday that we are going to write in her IFSP. He has no clue because he hasn't spent any time with her.

Then it was followed by my hair stylist cancelling on me. Okay, I knew her son was sick, so it was iffy as to if she was going into work anyway. But she thought she had pink eye and she didn't want to give it to me to then in turn give it to Princess! Yeah, that didn't really hit me until tonight. I mean, sure she doesn't want to get any of her customers sick, but to be thinking about Princess, it just kind of hit me. Someone else was thinking about my little girl.

Then today was World Prematurity Day. Princess got to wear my favorite outfit because it was purple!

Things were fine. That is until I nearly forgot to give Princess her medication this morning. And then this afternoon, after Little Man came home, I went to give Princess her afternoon meds and I mixed up the doses! Oh my poor little brain can't take much more. It didn't help that Little Man came home in tears from his dad's. He was just sad. And it doesn't help that Princess is having a difficult time burping after her bottles because she literally falls asleep during them, so she wakes up screaming. I have ALL of Princess's bottles to wash before her bedtime bottle. I'm just so not feeling like doing ANYTHING right now. I'd like to just run away on vacation right now.

For all of you who look at me, or read this blog, and go "I could never handle all that" or "You handle it all so well," please remember that there are days that even I don't want to get out of bed. And surprisingly, those are the days that probably would seem like a normal day to anyone in my shoes. The days like what happened during the Crazy Nightmare Week are usually the days I'm okay with everything, even if things frustrate me or worry me so much I want to cry. The days that seem the most mundane, are the ones where I want to just stay in bed and not do anything.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Shut-In Saturday Week 7: Appointments

Even though Princess is shut-in and can't be around crowds, she still has appointments she has to go to from time to time. This week, we were off to the cardiologist. I finally remembered to take pictures! Probably because he was running behind. I almost expect it now because he sees so many and he literally has them back to back. Not to mention it was the insurance nightmare mess for some. Thank goodness Princess has CCS! So I snapped a couple of pictures while we were waiting for Dr. K.

All was good. We don't have to go see him for another 2 months! This is a VAST improvement because when we started seeing him 4 months ago it was weekly. Sometimes having a diagnosis, even the diagnosis we have, is a good thing.

We also met with J, our developmental specialist. Next week we write our plan for Princess's development. So glad this is something that gets to be done in the home. I know it will help her. It kind of got me thinking about things when I was giving J all our information. It actually got overwhelming. When you sit there and list EVERYTHING that Princess has had happen and all that is going on, it's pretty overwhelming. I guess that's why I don't do it so often and try not to think about it. Sure, thinking about the PHA2 is an almost daily thing, as we have medication because of it. But I don't really think about the milk protein allergy much. Or the eczema and sensitive skin. Every so often I think about the heart condition. But I'm okay with it all.

Okay, enough of that, here's more pictures:

Princess and Pops fell asleep on the couch together. Managed to get that one.

Then there was the picture of Meme and Little Man.

And then, last night, Princess was so sleepy, she fell asleep in the walker. Believe me, after the no sleep day we had on Thursday, she NEEDED the sleep.

We got her Bumbo Tray today. So she got to sit up in her Bumbo and play with toys on the tray! Makes things so much easier.

And then we installed the convertible car seat in Meme's car. Now the infant carrier/car seat can just stay in mine. So of course we had to take it for a test drive to make sure she fit well in it. Princess loved it! She got to sit up more and look around!

And here's one of Princess just sitting up on the table. Just because.

Oh, I hope you noticed the new page at the top. It's our awareness ribbons for Princess. I'm still looking for one for the heart condition. I may not find it. But just as a reminder, tomorrow, November 17, is World Prematurity Day. Wear purple for preemies. By reading this blog, you actually know TWO preemies!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

I am a Welfare Mom

I'm a Welfare Mom. I'm not afraid to admit it. I made a choice and wound up on cash aid and food stamps because of that choice. What choice did I make? To get out of an abusive relationship. I am currently unemployed and cannot work, due to Princess's sensitive immune system. As a result, we have to have cash aid and food stamps to help us out.

The reason I'm writing this post today is because every so often there is the call for drug testing for those applying for cash aid. I am totally against this. Why? Because applying for cash aid already had SO many hoops to jump through, why do we need one more? Because there's already enough of a stigma of applying and using cash aid, why do we need to add to it? Because there are many reasons as to why someone would need cash aid and/or food stamps, why do we need to delay it for them longer? Let me elaborate.

1. Do we need more hoops to jump through?
Usually this idea for drug testing is started by someone who has never had to apply for federal/state aid before. Then it spreads. If you have ever had to apply for any type of state aid, then you know how much stuff they want to know. It's not just your income. When I applied for food stamps and cash aid, I had a whole STACK of papers. Some of the things they needed were:

  • Pay Stubs
  • Bank Statements
  • Vehicle Registration
  • Birth Certificates
  • Social Security Cards
  • Rental Agreements
Plus I had to apply for unemployment, AND they needed my kid's shot records! And even then, I still had to go down and write a statement about the three deposits that were done in one of my accounts and how they are no longer being deposited into that account. I also had to be fingerprinted and photographed.

The state has 45 days from the time of the application to determine eligibility. Do we really need a drug test on top of all of that?

2. Do we need to make people feel bad for applying?
People crack jokes and make snide comments about people being on welfare. You hear it all the time. Not to mention, people feel bad for having to ask for help. Most people on welfare don't want to be there. They want to be able to provide for their families. Some people don't even apply for food stamps and/or cash aid because they are afraid of what people might say. Some people don't know that they could qualify if they applied. You tack on a drug test and to some people it's an accusation. It's not accusing anyone, but to some, it can feel that way on top of feeling bad for asking for help.

3. Does it need to take longer for those who need it?
There are lots of reasons people need help. I'm college educated and could be out there substitute teaching if I could, but I can't. My daughter has special needs. If she gets sick, she is more than likely going to end up in the hospital. I can't put her in a daycare for that very reason. I'm on cash aid because I left an abusive relationship. There are families on cash aid and food stamps because they can't find a job. There are families who are on cash aid and food stamps because they are foster families. It took 30+ days for my cash aid and food stamps to be approved and to be loaded onto my card. When it finally hit, I cried. I had spent 7 weeks relying on my family for a place to live, food to eat, and diapers for the baby.

Some of us these days are living pay check to pay check. If we miss one pay check, we go without food. If we miss two, we're homeless. Look at the recent government shutdown. It was 17 days that some people had to work and not get paid for right away. Some people were initially told not to come to work and they weren't getting paid at all. Not having money hurts. It causes stress and worry. 

There are people who abuse the system, don't get me wrong. But it's those people who do that that give the rest of us honest people who really need cash aid and food stamps a bad reputation. If you know of someone who is abusing the system, report them! We are not all drug users, alcoholics, or trying to get a free handout.

So the next time you're behind someone in line who has to pull out a benefits card to pay for their groceries or their kid's clothes, don't judge them. Understand that they are in a difficult situation. They may be wondering how they are going to make the food that they just bought last till their next award comes in. They may be praying that their kids don't outgrow the clothes they just bought knowing that they aren't going to have any more money for new ones until the first of the month. Understand that times like Christmas and birthdays are hard because they can't buy their kid that really expensive gift they want because there other things that need to be taken care of first. Realize that they may be in a difficult situation through no fault of their own. They are trying to get back on their feet and when they do, they will no longer need the help. They are simply doing the best that they can with what they have been given. If you are able, help them out. Believe me, they will welcome the blessing.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

God Takes Care of the Faithful

"For the LORD loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones." -- Psalm 37:28 
So by Wednesday of last week, I was ready to just crawl back into bed. It had started the previous Friday. You can read about it here. But by Thursday, God was blessing our little household.

After the nightmare that was the insurance and the nephrologist's office, I decided I had better call the formula provider just to make sure things were going to be okay. Plus we hadn't gotten our formula yet, so I was a little concerned. Yes, the account was flagged because of the new insurance. But the lady on the phone was SO AWESOME. She said that I would be getting a shipment in the next day or two. It would either be the full shipment or two to three cans to keep us in formula until it cleared. Friday, I had the FULL SHIPMENT of formula! Praise God!

Also on Thursday, my food stamps and cash aid FINALLY came through! I was going to call that day, but opted not to. Instead, I checked the website, and lo and behold there was money on my card! The entire food stamp benefit didn't hit until the next day, but I figured they back-dated everything to the first of November so I got a week's worth of food stamps and then on my actual award day got my full month's award. And the cash aid was back-dated two months! It felt SO GOOD to go to the store and buy Princess diapers without having to rely on my parents! I did have to find an ATM to withdraw money from the card to put into my account, but that wasn't too difficult.

There was one thing on Thursday that I was a little on edge about.

About three weeks ago, a lady came out from our local regional center to assess Princess for services. I heard back from her on Thursday. She had presented Princess's case to the evaluation team and they agreed that Princess would qualify for gross motor and communicative services. It took me by surprise. It took me a couple hours before I posted it to my Facebook. And then I couldn't really grasp why people were saying it was a good thing. I guess it was because my brain went to "Oh God, yet another thing on my plate to schedule around." And then my brain went to "What did I do that caused Princess to need services? Can I really take care of a child this special?" But these feelings didn't last long. I realized that this was a good thing. This was why we had been referred to the regional center in the first place. After having spent two and a half (almost three, if you count the additional admits) months in the hospital AND being born premature, she was at risk for going to have developmental delays. We are already set up with the hospital's high risk clinic in February for that very reason. So this is a good thing. She's going to get the help she needs now and hopefully, down the line, we won't need more help.

Let me explain the differences between what we are doing now and the hospital clinic. What we are doing through the regional center is free of charge. It's done through the county board of education's early intervention program. (School districts would like it if you took advantage of early intervention so that your kid won't need services, or as intense of services, when they got to school. Granted, not everyone's issues will be resolved with ONLY early intervention, but starting early is the best thing!) What we are going to do with the hospital clinic in February is to find out if she is going to need additional therapy that would be covered by the insurance. So, this means we will be on an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). It's like an IEP in school, except it's for kids under 3. I already heard from our developmental specialist, J. He's going to come out next week to meet Princess and myself. I also received the observations from our intake coordinator. I can see why J is going to come out. whereas I agree with most of what was said in on the assessment, it was almost a month ago now. Things change SO FAST with babies. They may not be doing one thing one day and the next, like magic, they get it! For example, when I initially spoke with our intake coordinator on the phone to set up the home visit, I had told her that Princess wasn't rolling over at all. Later THAT SAME DAY, Princess decided to roll over from her tummy to her back. So thankfully, J is going to get to see for himself what Princess can and cannot do. The following week, we'll sit down with our service coordinator, M, and write the IFSP. It'll be valid for a maximum of 6 months, so essentially till Princess's first birthday. Of course, anyone on the team has the right to reconvene the IFSP team and revise it at any time.

So, even though the week started off as a nightmare, it ended with lots of blessings. God has said He will take care of us.
"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done."  -- Philippians 4:6
 All the Glory goes to God. He is the one that will take care of what we need. I don't need to worry about things. And when things get to hectic, I know that it is just God reminding me that things aren't always going to be easy, but He is always there.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Shut-In Saturday Week 6: Crazy Blessings

How has it already been 6 weeks of being shut-in?

This week has had some pretty crazy stuff happen. First of all, I was helping Little Man make his bed and I happened to glance underneath the front corner next to the nightstand. I see used tissues under his bed. So I proceed to make him dig them ALL out. This is what I found:

Yeah, pretty much for the past 6 weeks, he has been shoving his used tissues behind his bed. This is about a box worth, I would say.

Then Princess decided to sit up almost by herself!

MeMe was playing "sit-em-up" with her and every time she sat up, she would latch on to MeMe's finger. Save for the mouth on her finger, Princess was sitting all by herself!

Then Wednesday was the nephrologist appointment. You can read about why it was crazy here, along with the other crazy nightmare things that happened this week. But on the way back from that appointment, I got this picture of Little Man:

Later that day, he got to do his favorite thing of the week: bring in the trash can! He likes the trash can here because it "shrunk" and he can bring it in by himself. This happens every week, but I finally managed to get a picture of him doing it!

Then I managed to get Little Man to write his letter to Santa:

You can read more about it here.

Then this evening I caught this little blessing:

Little Man was reading to his little sister! I promise a post tomorrow or Monday on the blessings that occurred this week, because there were a few. But until then, here's a few more pictures of Princess. Here's one of her loving on her sock monkey:

And then just another one of her:

Until next week!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Christmas List

Even though we are Christian, we still embrace the idea of Santa. I know of some Christian families who only do 3 gifts with the thought of Jesus only got 3 gifts. We don't do this. I look at Santa as being one of the first steps to teaching little kids about Faith. Believing in Santa is about Faith for little kids. They have to believe in someone who isn't here physically. It's just like believing in Jesus. If they can embrace Santa and the Tooth Fairy by Faith, they can embrace Jesus by Faith. So we do Santa in our house.

This year, Little Man is big enough to actually write a letter to Santa. Now, most 3 year olds would probably just draw pictures of what they want. Not my 3 year old. He can actually form letters! He can actually sound out words! So we sat down and he wrote a letter to Santa! I helped a little bit with sounding out some of the more difficult words. But otherwise, Little Man wrote this letter ALL ON HIS OWN!

Here is the direct letter for letter dictation:


So for those of you who don't read little kid:
Dear Santa
Play-Doh Rowdy
Garbage Truck
Big Digger

We have begun working on lowercase letters as well as uppercase letters, that's why there are a few lowercase letters in there. I decided to begin focusing more on those because that is the next logical step and what you want in kindergarten not preschool. He knows how to form his capitals, but the lowercase letters are more difficult. He pretty much sounded out these words all by himself. Yes, there are reversals of letters (N, d, b). Those are normal. I'm not worried about it and parents, if you see your kindergartner doing this, it is NORMAL! And no, I did not correct his invented spelling. Invented spelling is important. It helps with the kids learning the rules of our complex language. So parents, please don't correct your child's invented spelling when they are young. As they get older, they will learn the conventions needed to become good spellers. If you correct them now, you are setting yourself up to be correcting them for a very long time. They need the confidence to do it on their own.

I know it is just "Dear Santa," a list, and his name (yes, he did sign it). There's no "I would like" or any real sentence structure. I'm okay with this. It is his very first letter to Santa. The fact that he used letters and not pictures is a big deal. The fact that he actually tried to stay on the guidelines is a big deal. The fact that he sounded out the words by himself is a big deal. I'm just super proud of Little Man. He is growing by leaps and bounds!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Crazy Nightmare Week

I have had the absolute WORST week.

First, let's talk medication. Princess was just about out of the beta-blocker she's on. So I called in the refill on Friday. They said it wouldn't be ready until after 1pm on Monday. Okay, so I wasn't entirely sure we would make it all the way to Monday as she gets this medication 3 times a day, but I figured we would be close because the last time it was filled was on the 4th and it would be ready on the 4th. I usually have at least two or three doses beyond a month in the bottle. Okay, so no big deal. We get to Monday fine. I go down to pick up her prescription and they ask for a new insurance card. I haven't received it because it JUST went into effect on Friday. So I have to pay for her prescription. Thankfully this is the only one and it's not TOO expensive. They told me that once I get a new card, to just bring it in and they'll reimburse me. Okay, God will take care of this.

I had about 4 cans of formula left. I was going to call on Monday to place my new order. On Thursday, the provider had called me for a recent length and weight because they needed a new authorization. So I wasn't too worried. Until we went out to town on Saturday. When we got home, we found ONE can of formula on the floor. The other three cans had been taken outside by the dogs! Two of the cans were destroyed and one had teeth marks in it. Now, here's the thing with her formula, WIC does NOT cover it. It has to be done by prescription, otherwise it costs $45 a can! The cans are only 14.5 ounces too, so they aren't big. There is no place to get it locally, so we have to get it delivered. So I called on Monday to order a new shipment. They said it could take 3-5 BUSINESS days. Oh great! So that means I MAY not have enough formula to last until it gets here. Thankfully I was able to stop by the cardiologist's office and pick up a can. Hopefully we'll make it to our shipment date. God's going to take care of us.

Oh, and welfare/food stamps has been stupid too! I called on Monday to see where I was at in the process. Tuesday, my worker called me back to say that her supervisor had kicked it back to her because there were these 3 deposits on the one account. So I explained it to her that those were from my (ex)-hubby and his job, but he had since quit depositing those checks into that account, which is a joint account. So I had to DRIVE down there and write an affidavit to that effect. So hopefully it's going to go through here really soon, as I have no money to pay anything!

Then today, oh today. I just want to crawl back into bed. So we are now 2 hours away from the nephrologist. Being this appointment was set up at 9:20 in the morning, we have to leave before 7am, just in case we run into traffic. Thankfully, not very much traffic at all! We get there, get coffee and then head over to their office. That's when the nightmare begins.

See, we're in California. We have a specialized medicaid program called Medi-Cal. Well, Medi-Cal JUST changed on Friday to "managed Medi-Cal." Essentially, they are partnering with bigger insurance companies. I think it's to cut down the cost, but whatever the reason, it has been nothing but a huge headache for me!

First of all, I had to choose what insurance I wanted. I was advised by the cardiologist to pick Anthem Blue Cross. Okay, so that's what I picked. Well, like I said earlier, I haven't received a card yet, that's why I had to pay for the prescription. So today, I find out that they want a pre-authorization for the nephrologist visit! WHAT? We've had this appointment on the books for 3 months now! And on top of that, THEY picked our primary care physician. So I got information from the receptionist and I called them. I go the PCP changed so I'll actually be getting 2 cards here soon. So then I went on to tell them the problem of us being at the nephrologist's office and them saying they can't see her. Well, while I'm on hold with Blue Cross, we get called back for essentially a consult. See, since Princess was diagnosed with PHA2, the ONLY ONE who can answer any questions I have is the nephrologist. PHA2 is a kidney disorder. So I get back there and while I'm waiting and feeding Princess, Blue Cross calls me back. They tell me they'll cover the visit today, but when I poke my head out the door, I can't find anyone! (Isn't that always the case!) I let them know our situation with the prescription and the Synagis shots and the whole thing. They were VERY understanding and said they would take care of everything! So, I may end up getting a bill for this visit, but I have already talked to Blue Cross and they said they would cover it, so I'm not worried about it. God will take care of the faithful.

As frustrating as this whole thing has been, we're doing okay. I found out what I can feed Princess. I found out what to do if she gets really sick. We got a decent blood pressure. We did labs. I called the pediatrician and got them going with new referrals/pre-authorizations for both the nephrologist and the cardiologist. I spoke to the cardiologist's nurse and she said that they are having just as many problems with it, but that since Princess also has CCS, we should be fine for next week's visit. So I'm just trying to decompress after all this chaos! As if things weren't going crazy enough as is! One of these days we'll be okay and things will be normal, or as normal as they can be.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Pumpkin/Halloween Themed Homeschool Activities

I've kind of been taking a break from homeschooling for the past two weeks. Mainly because of the Big Chaotic Mess that is happening, but I decided to get back into it this past week with some Pumpkin/Halloween themed activities. Yes, we are a Christian family and I see nothing wrong with my son dressing up and getting candy. We have a Harvest Festival at our church, so we do that instead of trick-or-treating. I wouldn't let him trick-or-treat in the town we live in anyway. There are very few sidewalks here and on my way home after Harvest Festival this year, there were HUGE GROUPS of people walking down the side of the street. It just scares the daylights out of me. We've had so many accidents involving pedestrians and cars that I just feel better taking my kid to a Harvest Festival instead of going door to door.

So we did some things with the pumpkins we got from The Trip to the Pumpkin Farm. Of course we carved a jack o'lantern.

We also did the classic little kid experiment to see if the pumpkin would float or sink.

This was Little Man trying to push the pumpkin into the water.

Of course it floated because even with all the "pumpkin guts", the pumpkin is mostly air.

This is our journal entry about it.

We also did some activities from 3 Dinosaurs. She released a Pumpkin Activities Pack that we just LOVED! It's a shame my printer ran out of ink otherwise I would have printed a LOT more!

This was the roll and cover activity.

This was the missing letters activity.

We also did the pumpkin/jack o'lantern sorting. I let Little Man cut out the pumpkins and then glue them on in the right spot.

We also somehow managed to get a Concepts About Print (CAP) activity done from This Reading Mama. We were supposed to do this activity a few weeks ago when we did letter J, but we just didn't have time that week, so I saved it and we did it this week! It worked great!

As you can see, I focused on pumpkins instead of Halloween. Yes, I do believe my kids need to experience some aspects of Halloween, but I'm not going to focus on the scary parts of it, especially now while they are little. Maybe when they are older, we may have spider webs and scary things in the house, but not now.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Shut-In Saturday Week 5: Halloween!

This week, Princess turned 7 months old! (How did that happen?) It's hard to believe that this journey started 7 months ago. She's eating foods. She's rolling over from her tummy to her back. She's sitting up supported. She's very curious. She's putting things in her mouth.

We decided to try her in the walker. We knew her feet wouldn't touch the ground, but thought that it might give her a different perspective on things. She did really well in it and enjoyed it. She's pretty close to outgrowing the swing and bouncy seat, so we needed something other than her being held and laying on the floor.

This week was Halloween. So Little Man and I carved his pumpkin.

Princess wasn't going to get to go to our church's Harvest Festival, so I didn't even bother buying her a costume. Instead, I bought her a onesie.

And I didn't even have to buy Little Man a costume either! See, last year, he wanted to be a dump truck. I had no idea what I was going to do when I found a Chuck the Dump Truck costume at one of the Halloween Stores! This year, he wanted to be a dump truck again, so we recycled the Chuck costume!

Little Man actually did a really good job with no nap that day. He went with me early to help decorate and played the games. The great thing about the Chuck costume is that it came with a built in the treat bag: the dumper! So I didn't have to worry about him losing his treat bucket! But about 6:30 he was tired and hungry. He'd had a few pieces of candy and that was it. So I took him home. Of course, he started crying because he didn't want me to go back, but I got him settled down, got him his dinner and checked on Princess. She was having a bottle with Pops.

Harvest Festival went well. We didn't have nearly has many kids as last year, but it rained last year and we were the ONLY one doing something on Halloween that was INSIDE. Everyone else's outside stuff got cancelled. So this year, we kind of had a steady stream up until I did our drawing halfway through. Then most of them left.

Then there was today. We managed to put a bow in Princess's hair! This is the first time she's kept anything on her head for any length of time since she came home from the hospital (the first time).

Doesn't she look cute? One of my church friends made all these bows for her that would attach to headbands but then would also work in her hair as she got older. I'm so glad she kept it there for a while.
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