Sunday, July 17, 2016

WHAT??? A Name???

I have tried really hard to raise my children in a musical home.  They have both taken music lessons and we have just about every live action and animated musical ever made on our DVD shelves.  I have always been a singer and played clarinet from 5th grade through high school.  Growing up, my family went to movies and plays that encouraged my love for Broadway.  
Recently, I have found a wonderful way to encourage active participation while watching some of our favorites.  There is a movie theater not too far from where we live that offers "sing along" versions or some of the greatest musical movies ever made.  We have seen Mamma Mia, The Music Man and last night we got to see Aladdin.  Each time we go we get a "kit." Inside the kit are props to encourage participation.  Favorite one last night at Aladdin... a small packet of crackers that we got to force feed to the person sitting next to us.  For Mamma Mia, fake money we got to throw in the air because that is what people with a lot of money do with it.  Anyway, usually there are about six props for each film.
James has only seen Aladdin on our TV and it isn't a movie that he frequents.  I wasn't sure if he would love it as much as my husband and I do, but I knew it was an experience I needed him to try.  James got surprisingly into the movie, (minus the very loud scenes but my husband's hands over James's ears solved that problem.) The movie got to the scene where Aladdin and Jasmine had been caught after the marketplace scene.  >>click here<< Jasmine was upset at Jafar for (supposedly) carrying out the punishment for "kidnapping the princess."  ("Death... by beheading.") The scene ends with her crying into the thick fur of Rajah's coat, lamenting that she didn't even know the boy's name.  James had been very quiet during this part of the movie.  However, upon hearing that line, he slumped further in his chair and loudly belted out, "REALLY? That is what she is concerned with?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Boy, do I love this kid!!!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

I Guess the Extra Math Practice This Summer is Helping.

½ off sale
James came to me last night just before he was heading off to bed.  
Every night as we put James to bed,
we call Kiefer and he comes trotting 

like a puppy, jumps up on the bed and 
settles in.  I know he is mostly there 
for the fuzzy blanket, but James loves 
this part of his end of the day routine!
"Hey, Mom."
"Do I have a 3 pack?"
"Ah... what?"
"Well, I don't have a 6 pack so do I at least have a 3 pack?"
"Ah... I don't think so."
"Well then... I'm just fat."
Before I could respond with my motherly quip to help with his self-esteem, away he cheerfully went off wishing me a good night and calling his favorite bedtime fellow, Kiefer.  

Just another night in the Laughter House. 

Friday, July 1, 2016

He is Growing up SO Quickly!!!

Okay, I know that I should expect it because my son is twelve, but it took me by surprise this morning. James has had crushes before, the most notable one in the second grade.  During that one, the young lady's parents contacted the teacher and were very unhappy that James had such affection for their daughter, almost to the point of trying to have him moved to another class. Autism or not, I believe it was an appropriate level of attention for a young child trying out love for the first time.  Anyway... fast forward to today.  James has been doing an online camp for beginning coding using Minecraft. He almost immediately really liked another participant, a young lady only identifiable by her Minecraft username. Today was  the final day of the camp and I spent some time before the camp prepping him for this disappointment. >>Pizza Therapy after last Minecraft experience ending<<  He talked himself into having a great time and it was very successful.
Today, the kids got to do pretty much what they wanted to do, and James and this young lady had a wonderful time.  Towards the end of the camp, the counselors invited all of the kids to the dance floor.  James and all the other kids went and when they got there, James gave a poppy to his young friend.  He whispered to me, "Mom, I have a crush on her."  He blushed, his hands went automatically over his face, his hands got clammy, etc. He was experiencing everything that young boys and girls experience when they truly like each other and want to spend a lot of time together.
At the very end, the counselors let the kids write bios and disclose their first names to the other campers. James wrote that he was twelve and entering the seventh grade. He hoped to have fun and have a lot of friends in the coming school year.  He also wrote that he lived in California.  (I had to stop him from giving out our town.)  His young friend wrote that she was eleven and lives on the East Coast.  (She additionally gave her state, but for her protection her name and location won't show up here.)  James got super excited and he started bouncing in his chair saying that she lived close and we could meet with her. I had to tell him that the East and West Coast are on opposite sides of this very large country.  He took it well, asked her to meet him on his personal Minecraft realm and off he ran to meet her in a place that defies all geographic limitations.  I hope she will be taking the game design camp towards the end of July. That would be so fun for James to meet up with her again in a camp.  However, for now, they will be on his realm in Minecraft and giggling.  The time difference may be difficult for them to work around but Minecraft doesn't follow many of the rules we have on this planet we live on, so I guess it won't be too difficult.