Archive for the 'Shayna' Category

Song of the day

My love of The Beatles has clearly transferred to my children. Both Avi and Noam know many Beatles tunes, and they can usually identify a Beatles song even if they have not heard it before (I’m very proud). Now Shayna is also getting into the groove and she also knows Beatles songs. Of course she knows many of the words in Yellow Submarine (which was also Avi and Noam’s first Beatles song), but there is another song that all of them seem to like and often ask for.

The film Yellow Submarine has a very interesting story. In 1964 The Beatles contracted with United Artists to make three motion pictures. The first was the wonderful A Hard Day’s Night and the second was the not as wonderful HELP! Soon after they produced the British television movie Magical Mystery Tour which was very poorly received.

Not really wanting to do any more movies, but still having one movie left to make for UA, the group agreed to give their music to an animated film. Five new songs were added to a bunch of Beatles hits and the movie Yellow Submarine was born. Actors were hired to do the group’s voices and the movie was a big hit. In fact The Beatles themselves like the movie so much they added a short live scene at the very end in which they all appeared.

My kids love this movie (after having seen it at our friend’s house in Vermont) and became particularly fond of the song All Together Now which is one of the new songs.

Here are two videos with the song, one is where the song appeared in the movie and the other is the reprise at the end of the film. My kids get a real kick out of the end in that the words all together now are translated into many languages including Hebrew so they all keep an eye out for that.

Enjoy!

Updates

After yet another long time away from blogging it’s time for a little family update.

I’ll start with Shayna. Shayna is now in a new school. She is in the 3 year old room at the Y at Parker at Stonegate. Don’t ask about the name, but suffice it to say she is very happy and she is in a group of kids her own age rather than being the oldest kid in the daycare where she was. The director of her old school would not promote her because she is not fully potty trained, and Shayna is being very difficult about that. So we moved her. The new school is in a wonderful state of the art facility and so far everyone is happy.

Noam is in his third week of 1st grade at Solomon Schechter Day School of Raritan Valley. He is also enjoying his time there, especially since his best friend is in his class too! Mkm will be going to back to school night there on Wed, so I am sure I will have more to report after that.

Avi has been at Nu Vue Academy all summer with mostly positive results. They were closed for two weeks in the end of August, and they reopened in their new facility which is also brand new and state of the art. He definitely likes the new building. Our main concern with the school is that it may not be challenging enough for Avi. Back to school night there is on Thursday so hopefully we will find out more.

In terms of Avi’s ADHD, there is really nothing new to report. He continues to take Abilify which is a medication for bipolar disorder, and it is possible that Avi is bipolar. No one seems to want to label him and we are fine with that. He also wears a Daytrona patch every day which is a transdermal method of taking ritilin.

So that’s it on one foot. Mkm will be preparing a holiday update about our family and I will post that here when it is finished.

Oh, yeah. I am getting very hooked on Facebook! Come find me there!

Back again!

After a bit of a hiatus, I am back to writing again and hopefully, this time is will last a bit longer.

Things are going well in the Goldwasser household for once. Shayna continues to grow and be a very happy and wonderful 2 ½ year old. She is learning how to be a terrible two at times, but most of the time she is happy, friendly and a wonder to be around.

Noam is also a happy boy, but as always he really suffers from that middle child syndrome. Avi take a lot of our time and Shayna just always seems to be spoiled. We try hard to give him special time, and that usually works. Noam can get very angry when things don’t go his way, but I think that is normal for a 6 year old boy. That’s right, on this coming Saturday, Noam is turning 6! They grow up so fast! We are having a party for him on August 3rd, since there are three other boys in his class with birthdays around now. We just took too long to get the invites out, so we picked the 3rd (as did one of the other boys, so there are two parties that day, yikes!)

That leaves Avi of course. Avi has been going to his new school now for a few weeks. As I explained in an early posting, Avi’s day is split into 10 periods. For each period he can get 0, 1, or 2 points. At the end of the day the points are added up. 16 points or greater means the next day is a green day and 15 points or less and the next day is a red day. Red day means that you lose one privilege that day. Since Avi started he has had only two red days, and in fact since last Monday, he has had only 2 days below the max of 20 points. So far this week he is on track for 20 points each day for the week. We will get his something if he does this.

He is still struggling when he gets home, but we are working on that. First off, he is on different meds. He was moved off the Zyprexa and now takes Abilify which is usually used for bipolar disorder, although they are not giving his that label. We were also asked (again) to consider a stimulant for the ADHD. We told the new psychiatrist about our experiences and he suggested that we try Daytrana. This is Ritalin but it is administered by a patch that we put on his hip each morning. He has been on this for over a week now and so far so good. We are feeling good about his meds now and hopefully we are on the right track.

We have also found other assistance. It seems that there are agencies out there that can help with special needs children. The only problem is that they don’t advertise as they have limited funding. So after going through this for quite some time we were referred to an agency that sends a behavioral specialist to our home once a week to work with Avi and us. We are also looking into other methods of helping us learn how to help Avi.

The only other big news is our Disney trip at the end of August and I will write about that tomorrow.

Where we are

Yesterday, Avi started his first day at his new School, Nu Vue Academy.  It is a therapudic school, for bright children who suffer from behaviorial and emotional disorders.  The first day went well.  His bus picks him up at our door at about 7:10 so he now needs to get up earlier than he ever has.  The good part of that is that I get to see him before I go to work.  I wake him up when I go downstairs in the morning and he gets dressed in his nu vue uniform (a nu vue polo shirt and kakie or blue shorts).  I made him breakfast and we got to spend a few minutes before I had to go to work.

mkm said that when the bus came, he was hesitant and very huggy with her (which is not normal for Avi), but he is allowed to be nervous on his first day.  We get a report back each day from them which we need to sign and return.  At the start of school they offer breakfast, but he ate at home, so he met another student and they played a game together which 6 months ago probably never would have happened.

They use a points system there as part of their behavior modification plan.  Each day is broken up into ten segments.  Each segment is a different task or lesson.  It could be math, or group therapy, lunch or gym, etc.  For each segment he can get two, one or zero points.  So the max is 20 points for the day.  They get green (I am not sure yet what this means) if they get 16 to 20 points and red if they get 15 or less.  Avi got 18 on his first day and we were so proud of him that mkm bought his the soundtrack from Camp Rock.

Later on in the year, they will be able to use the points to actually purchase things.  I don’t know what, but I am sure it will be fun for the kids.  So time will tell how Avi does, but we have confidence in him.

This week was also the start of camp for Noam and Shayna.  They are going to a day camp run by the local Yeshiva.  The came is very good and they attract kids from outside of the Orthodox community (such as us).  They have a beautiful in ground pool and they do all kinds of fun day camp activites.  Noam is in the older bunks and they used to go each week for a day trip on Thursdays.  This year, due to gas prices, they are bringing a lot of activities in rather than the kids going out, but they are having a wonderful time.

Noam, unfortunately is afraid of the water, and we are going to try a star chart to get him to go in the pool and learn to swim.  We’ll see if that works.  Star charts never worked for Avi, but Noam is a little easier, so maybe it will.

UPDATE.  mkm just called me.  She spoke to Noam’s counslor when she dropped him off today.  She said that Noam really likes one of the swimming instructors and he IS going in the pool.  They give him stickers when he does and when he participates, so maybe I dont need to do the star chart after all.  And get this.  Noam is teaching the boys in his bunk chess.  He learned how to play a few months ago.  He is not that good yet, but I am sure soon he will be better than me.  Adi (his counselor) said that yesterday he had 5 boys around the chess board for over 30 minutes!

Shayna is about 30% on her way to being pottie trained.  She has gone a couple of times by herself, and we are now taking her all the time.  She is still in diapers, but we hope to get her in pull-ups very soon.  She loves the pool and they wont take the kids in the big pool when they are in diapers.  Pull-ups are ok, so we are hoping that soon she will be in the big pool.  I took her to a friends house where they have a pool and she is so ready to swim.

So that is where we are.  We are going to Disney at the end of August, so I am sure I will be blogging about that as we get closer.  We will be travelling down on the Auto Train so there will be lots to talk about.

Shayna

Just wanted to post this to brighten up the day!

Purim Costumes

No time to really write today. The megillah reading last night was a lot of fun. Probably close to 75 kids (plus adults)! Very noisy but a great time. Today I am cooking for guests coming for lunch tomorrow, so I will just post photos of the kids in their costumes. Sorry no song of the day. Maybe I will make it up somehow next week.

Avi Noam

Shayna

Late night and Frustrations

I did not get to make the rest of the Hamentashen on Tuesday night like I had hoped. So last night I made another 5 dozen. I had also planned on helping Avi finish his costume, but that did not happen either. arrrggggh! Nothing went right.

The pack meeting was ok but then when we got home it was right to bath and bed for the kids. Avi then did not fall asleep, despite his having his melatonin. He kept calling down to me and I think he finally drifted off around 10 pm. We were going to make rice crispy treats to add to the Mishloach Manot, but that never happened either.

What a night!

Tonight is the Megillah (Book of Esther) reading at my synagogue. Hopefully mkm will be able to finish up Avi’s costume with him late, and find Noam’s Mickey Mouse costume! I am sure it will all come together, but it will probably all be last minute. Shayna is going to be a Disney Princess. At least we know where her costume is!

Thank God I am off on Friday (although I am giving some of my time to the Rutgers Hillel so I can begin to install their new file server). The kids come home just after noon from school tomorrow and then we have guests for lunch on Shabbat (saturday afternoon)!

When do we get a vacation?