Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Evil of Sawbriers (and other news)

Pollen.  It's all over.  Still.  This year has been different for pollen.  Whereas we usually have the explosive sort of few weeks, where clouds of yellow ominously descend down upon the landscape, this year it's been more of a more subtle constant.  It's evidenced on the roads and cars, as always.  And it's evidenced by the fact that we have to take medication too.  Usually, the pollen effect on us is like wasabi, where it's shorter, and more explosive - but it goes away.  This year, it's more like habanero, which lingers with you for much longer.  That may be a terrible analogy, but it isn't as bad as what the pollen is this year.  We're all not liking it.  At all.

Fortunately, rain is on the way, and the promise of a breath of fresh air.  Until then, we retreat inside, which is the curse of this sort of springlike weather.  Here we are, just waiting for the weather to warm up to a point where it isn't too hot like in the summer, and we can't stay out there for too long, for fear of clogging up our lungs with that noxious yellow powder.

There are things to celebrate though.  For one, Madison is done with the Milestones testing.  She's completed her tests, and feels great about how she did.  Last year, you may remember she was sick the whole week, resulting in make-up tests later on.  Not this time.  She's been healthy, and that's something else to celebrate. Sure, she has to take allergy medication each morning, just like Daddy suddenly does.  But she's doing fine with her health.  Also, the skin breakouts can be managed, and that's great news for her appearance.  She's having to do quite a bit to her face each night before bed, but at least it's keeping her complexion much-improved.  We were worried for a short time, fearful that we'd have to go see yet another set of unique doctors prescribing unique medication with unique diets and so on.  But not so much.

An update on speech:  it's better.  It's nothing measurable, but there has been slight improvement over time, and I personally don't really credit the schools or anything.  We've got an appointment for next week to meet with the school's speech therapist, and beforehand we were supposed to fill out this assessment for that sort of addresses what we thought of the school's speech program.  We honestly had nothing to say one way or another, because there is very little communication.  Sometimes it's difficult to get Madison to say anything about what she's done in speech, or sometimes it seems like they just play games and so forth.  I think the other speech therapy we went to down in Alpharetta was more effective, or at least we got an idea of what was being worked on or what progress was being made.  It's not that Madison has difficulty communicating.  Even better, she seems to get along socially without any problems.  But her speech is not at that place yet where we think it needs to be, and as such we'll keep pressing for improvements.  Not on her so much, as we think she's doing all that can be done.  But if there's anything further we can do to partner with the therapists, we're all on board.  In the meantime, she's still fearless and oblivious that there's any improvements that need to be made in the first place.  If we don't understand her, why, that's our problem!  In fact, she's just recently asked Daddy if she can have more lines to say on stage with our current Neverland play.  She's fearless about speaking in front of large groups of people.  That might come in handy someday, a rather useful skill.

We're doing stories on the way to school, and on the way to ballet, and she helps out with the stories.  Her character Bloom is a favorite that has adventures with other Marvel superheroes.  Her favorites are currently Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, who seem to be besties with Bloom right now.  Their adventures are roughly as long as it takes to get to our destinations, but they're fun!

We're continuing our yard work outside, adding mulch and removing limbs from these Bradford pear trees in the front yard.  Mommy believes they're creating so much shade that it is difficult for grass to grow below.  With these branches cut, there's more room in our front yard, or at least it appears that way.  Ye-Ye came over and was very helpful in cleaning up.  Nana came over too, as we went to battle against those vile, insidious saw briers.  This plant is pure evil.

You have to dig for a while to get to this root - Daddy was digging for about twenty minutes to get this one, deep within.  It's like this pulsating heart-shape thing, complete with ventricles and aortas and stuff.  Daddy felt like Mola Rom, hoisting it up in the air with a maniacal laugh.  I left it at our front door like a cat would some dead prize, just so Mommy could see it.  And don't think just pulling at the top will work, because it is covered with thorns that penetrate garden gloves, and there is this network down below that must be entirely unearthed.

But unearth some we did, despite their sinister attempts to root themselves right with the other plants in a despicable attempt to protect themselves from getting pulled up.  We won the day though, and will continue our campaign against this detestable enemy!  We will win the day!

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