Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Then They Bring Me a Rose

Taj and Brannon picked me this rose on one of their walks together while I was at the gym. Brannon knows I LOVE roses and I love how they smell even more. They picked it off our neighbor's rose bush (thank goodness they asked!). It did have a stem on it, but Taj shook it so hard the blossom flew off. It was the perfect gift at the end of a long day.

I know that every mom out there has a day once in awhile or perhaps more often than that, that everything seems to go wrong. For example, last week I had an especially hard day. It started out good, but waking up was the only good thing about it. I was rushing to pack up myself and Taj for a weekend trip. We had waken up way too late in the morning for having to leave in the early afternoon. For the past week Taj will NOT go to sleep until 12:30 a.m. or later. It doesn't matter that we put him in bed hours before that, for some reason he is just off lately. Of course I don't go to bed until he is asleep because I can't sleep until I know he's tucked safe and sound in his bed fast asleep. Then he wakes up at 10:00 or 10:30 in the morning and so do I. Anyway, the point is I was already running late and in the middle of packing Brannon calls me and tells me I need to take the car in to get the tires changed before we leave. He knows I'm always late on a traveling day anyway, so picture me already stressed out trying to pack, clean the house, and tie up too many loose ends on a project that I've been working on before I leave town and the internet. I grudgingly told Brannon that I could have the tires changed. Once at the tire store Taj disappeared in the numerous racks of tires and actually climbed inside one of the racks and started knocking tires over, tearing signs off tire displays, and all sorts of other naughty things. I was about to go crazy at this point. So after barely making it through the tire change and lunch at Arby's, I rushed home to throw our bags in the car, answer quite a few time sensitive emails, and to lock down the house like Fort Knox (Brannon: Now make sure all the windows and door are locked and that the toilet in the hallway bathroom isn't leaking, and that the shower knobs are turned all the way off so the shower doesn't link, and check the sink in the kitchen too, and make sure the A/C is turned off (we don't want it running all weekend), and make sure the garage door is shut and my shed is locked). Quite the check list isn't it? My major concern of the afternoon was a big meeting I had. I showed up to the meeting to find that it was delayed and then when the meeting finally did commence, it didn't go well. By that point, I was way late to pick up Brannon and I concluded it was not a very good day at all. I know it's not a good day when the events provoke tears and I haven't cried in a long time! To top off the rest of the day, we spent the next five hours cramped in the little black Corolla traveling south. On the way we managed to get stuck in a Taco Time drive thru for almost an hour and Taj's sippy cup full of chocolate milk was dumped (without the lid on) over the top of my head and all over my new shirt and pants. At that point I swore and then I laughed. It seemed the perfect ending to the worst day. Then I thought how thankful I am that my biggest concerns and sorrows of the day were still nothing compared to many of those around me. I thought that some people would be grateful to have only my problems for the day. Then the day didn't seem so bad after all.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


I have glad tidings! I believe that after only a week of brushing, we are seeing an improvement in Taj's eating. I'm not sure if his better eating habits (eating two meals a day now instead of one or none) are directly correlated to the brushing, but obviously we are going to keep on brushing and hope for more wonderful results. Of course you can't have your cake and eat it too (so cliche I know!)...because Taj has also given up nap time this week. I don't know why. I don't know how, but I'm on the verge of panic mode. I'm hoping it's only a phase and that his good nap time habits will resurface very soon! On the bright side, at least I can put a movie on in my room and he will just lay on the bed and veg-out for at least an hour. So I do get a little break, but sometimes I want a sleepy break too. I know, it's a rough life I live. I really do consider myself very blessed that the only major thing I had to worry about the last two days was whether or not Taj was going to go down for a nap. It's been a really great summer so far and an even better pregnancy. I definitely haven't put on as much weight as I did with Taj and I'm not all puffy and swollen this time around. I'm still waiting on the puffy and swollen to gear up with the heat of the summer, but for now, I am enjoying being able to wear any of the shoes out of my closet. I think having a little person to follow around all day has helped me to stay in better shape this time around. Happy summer everyone!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Taj was bored in our backyard, so I cruised the local KSL classifieds and found him a sandbox. I didn't want to buy a new one just in case he didn't even like it. I guess even if he does just like it for just a few weeks, at least I didn't pay much for it! I bought the sand from Home Depot for only $3.43 a bag. I think that's pretty cheap considering it only took two bags to fill it. For anyone looking for sand for their sandbox, the sand I bought is called "Play Sand," made and cleaned specifically for sandboxes.
Good thing the sand was cheap because Taj doesn't know that the sand is supposed to STAY in the box. Besides filling up his car with it, there are little sand piles all over our backyard now, which drives Brannon crazy because he's pretty OCD when it comes to the yard. I just laugh because to me that's parenthood and those little sand piles all over our yard are reminders that we have a healthy, active, little boy running around the place, or should I say practically RUNNING the place!
This is what summertime does to little boys and I love it. What I don't love is that our bed has become Taj's new camp out spot. I have caught him more than once with his shoes on burrowed down in our nice, clean sheets snacking on Oreos or Doritos or whatever else he has found to snack on. Besides finding sand in our sheets, you can also find crumbs and the occasional dried booger. Lucky for me, he prefers Brannon's side of the bed, so I stay relatively untouched by Taj's grimy boy habits:)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


This is the brush (a surgical nail brush)that Taj has to be brushed with 3 times a day as part of his therapy. After he gets brushed (arms, back, legs, hands, feet), we do 10 joint compressions to his wrists, elbows, shoulders, and knees. We just started this brushing therapy a couple days ago, but we should see some results in his behavior in about a week, which I'm really excited about.
Taj getting some help doing joint compressions on his knees. We hold him and let him jump 10 times in the air.
Taj is getting his feet scrubbed with the brush and as you can see it tickles a lot!

Everyone has their idiosyncrasies, that weird quirk about them. Me, for example, the sound of people chewing gum, bread, bananas, basically anything that makes a weird smacking or clikcing noise drives me nuts. It always has and people can't quite understand why I just can't "get over it." Well, this particular quirk has plagued me since about the 7th grade when for some reason I became aware of noises that mouths make. Anyway.....I'm not doing this post about my weird quirks, that was just an example! No, this post is about my sweet two and half year old boy, Taj.

Taj is just like the average two year old in every way (active, curious, trouble on wheels, etc.). However, as of the past year, we have noticed that his speech is a little slow in coming, which isn't too abnormal considering boys take a little longer for speech and he's the first child. It has become more of a concern over the past three months, seeing as Taj maybe only says about 20 words. Of those 20 words. I haven't heard him say "momma, mommy or daddy" for at least a year and other words he used to say have disappeared as well. It's really hard to be around other little kids much younger than Taj and hear them saying words and sentences. Taj does surprise us every once in a while and blurt out a sentence or two, but it's definitely not consistent. He's very good at carrying on long babbling conversations with whoever will listen, so it's not like he's silent either. We've had his hearing checked and he's been tested for other things such as Autism. We tried an unsuccessful 5 months of speech therapy, so I cancelled that and started doing some research of my own. Taj has a lot of peculiar idiosyncrasies about him. For example, he can't stand the seam of a sock that doesn't lay right on his toes, the collar of a shirt, a tag, walking on grass or sand at the park, he's so particular and picky with texture of food that some days he doesn't eat anything at all except a few crackers, he doesn't like changes in schedule or dirty hands, extreme tantrums over having hair/nails cut, etc. All that may not seem that unusual, but add a speech delay and overly picky eating to that and obviously there's a problem.

Upon hearing someone mention "sensory disorder" at the park one day, I went home and googled the term. What I found shocked me. There are numerous sensory disorders I didn't even know existed and when I started reading the symptoms list for children with sensory disorders, I knew I had found out why Taj does the things he does. It was such a relief to me after a year of stressing out over Taj to find out what may be the reason behind his speech delay and very poor eating habits. I immediately made an appt. with an occupational therapist through the state health department, but wasn't satisfied with the therapist's response to Taj which was basically, "We all have idiosyncrasies, people just have to learn to get over it." Obviously Taj doesn't know how to "just get over it" and neither do we, so I went to the school district and found the help I sought for. Their occupational therapist evaluated Taj and determined that Taj has a Tactile Sensory Disorder, meaning, he is hypersensitive to touch in some aspects and hyposensitive to sensation when it comes to his mouth. (I'm not sure I have the terms right, I'm still learning for myself) The good news is that we are going to get help for Taj in both occupational therapy and speech. They are going to help him learn to eat better and help jump start his speech and get him on the right track. After soooo much anxiety and stressing every single day over eating and speech for the past year, it is such a relief when you find someone who can help you. I believe the sooner you get help when you sense something is off, the better.