Sunday, May 22, 2011

yardsale finds ( & what we do w/ FAS)

I know some people turn their nose to yardsales but the girls and I LOVE them!  It is fascinating I think to see what others no longer want but that you may treasure.  Doesn't hurt that you save bukoo bucks.  Years ago, there weren't as many people yardsaling as nowadays.  I see many teens out which surprised me.  Then again, great finds abound when out and about.  I'll share a few.

 This is one of our finds.  A simple end table.  Love it.  Not stained or anything.  No chips from the kids either.  Or scratches..yet.  We have an end table that we got free on the side of the road.  It's served it's purpose well but always wished for a new one.  Never been in the budget till now.  $5. 

Max carried it in.  It is solid too!  That's not where it's going.  That's just where he stopped.  Plus, Yana was mopping the floors so it was clear there.

 this was another find.  A new rug for Irina.  We had a pink fuzzy rug in her room but puppies had one too many accidents on it & fabreeze was not going to cut it for our daughter.  Remember, the one w/ OCD in regards to cleaning.  This one was only $10.  So, don't care too much when puppies destroy it.  See that chest by the window?  Look at the bottom of it.  And the wicker in the corner.  Puppies love wicker & wood.  Until puppies are fully out of this stage, absolutely nothing new is coming in this house. 

 This is Irina's new bike.  she loves it!  My girls have needed new bikes b/c almost all our bikes are broken.  They have to share & it's hard when everyone wants to ride together.  We've pieced together & fixed what we could.  Just couldn't afford a new bike.  Period.  Found these beach cruisers & thought it perfect.  See, Irina has issues w/ mechanical things and so figuring out how to work a bike w/ many gears was very hard for her.  She has been riding this bike all over since we got it.  Loves it.  She plans on riding everyday now which will help w/ the weight loss.  The bike is in mint condition.  $30. 

This is Yana trying out the beach crusier she got.  Still need an inner tube on this one.  Both are really nice bikes and now by boys want them!  And, the neighborhood kids have been riding them.  Go figure.  

Our kids and the neighbor's kid saw helmets by the side of the road.  Lady was throwing a whole bunch of things out.  She saw them all struggling trying to figure out how they'd carry everything, including a set of skis (don't ask) on bikes.  So, she loaded it up, came down & dropped it all off.  VERY sweet of her & we got to talking.  She has a daughter in college & one son getting ready to graduate.  She's going to spring clean she said b/c she knows it's got to go.  LOL.  Asked if I wanted anything.  Thankful she came over for sure.  See, we really needed helmets & just can't spend $20 on one for each of them.  Sorry, can't.  So, I usually get them at yardsales and such.  I also do this b/c they tend to destroy them.  Not sure how but they do.  Anyhow, this lady gave us a few helmets in excellent shape & now all the kids can ride at once.

URGHH!!!  Just wrote a bunch more to this but it didn't post.  Maybe later.  Kids and I had a great time finding things, Warren worked all day Saturday, and we ended the day w/ ice cream cake.  Yum.  Today, we went to church w/ a powerful message.  Went to get suitcases for our trip & a new back pack since Max took mine.  I've had the same back pack for 12 years & used it on our first adoption trip & planned to use it on my last.  But, Max's ripped so he got it.  Served me well & him.  He has since destroyed it.  Yep, lasted me 12 years and my son 1 month.  So, got another back pack today.  Also, a present for one of Nik's friends.   Came home and took Nik & Alex to a party.  Alyona did not get to go.  She was in trouble.  She has been really nasty lately.  Warren thinks her head may actually spin around soon.  LOL.  Last night's explosion from her was b/c we made her go to bed & get under the covers.  See, she was complaining she was cold & wanted to take Yana's comforter from downstairs.  We wouldn't let her.  She has plenty upstairs and a whole linen closet full.  Alyona threw a complete fit and temper tantrum.  Warren held her tight to his chest.  Like a bear hug.  She's screaming about how she hates her sisters and Warren starts whispering to her.  Helps calm them.  He's asking her why she's so angry lately.  Again, blaming on the sisters.  Not the problem.  It's a combination of things for Alyona.  Warren continued whispering to her and talking.  She was calm & then just stood there & hugged him for a few minutes.  Went to bed and woke up a new kid.

You have to remember, w/ FAS kids, there is no "off" switch.  You have to slowly create one w/ out escalating the situation.  The younger kids, we must physically touch them.  For Alex when he's upset, we have to grab him by both his hands and hold them & not let the hands go.  Talking to him the whole time, whispering, till he calms too.  Doesn't hurt the kids.  Gives them a visual.  Though our bodies are apart, even when they're mad, they are connected by both hands.  Alex holds his hands out in front of him.  We hold his hands.  He'll flinch but once he has that contact, it is almost a sense of relief for him.  Never let the kids go till they are calm.  Bojan we don't need to do this with.  However, he does not have FAS.  Nik isn't too bad either as far as tantruming goes.  Now, the 3 older ones w/ FAS/FAE we don't do this with any more.  Seriously, what teen is going to hold mom & dad's hand.  Some we tell to go away till they calm down.  Most will go out to the hammock and sit for awhile.  Then come back and we talk.  NEVER, EVER try to talk to an FAS/RAD kid while their in a tantrum state or rage.  It will not work.  Or, hasn't for us the last 12 years.  You take charge of the conversation.  If they interrupt, you tell them they can talk at the end.  They'll have their chance.  Warren uses a lot of analogies w/ our kids so they can understand things better.  I'm no good w/ the analogy part.  It is a trick to get FAS kids to understand when they are in a mood.  They have this pent up anger & it all will come out.  You can NOT get angry back.  That is key but oh sometimes it is so very hard.  If they're calling you nasty names or breaking something, it is hard not to want to get angry.  But, you can't.  You raising your voice or getting angry w/ them will only escalate their behavior.  They feed off of that.  So for us, it is whispering to them.  They hate it.  They do.  They feel like they must whisper too then and will stop the yelling and screaming.  About after a minute or two, you have them at least in a normal voice that you can talk to them.  Not sure if others out there w/ FASers do this or not but thought I'd share what works for us.  May sound simple or odd but it works.  And in our house, you do what works.  With our teens w/ FAS, we make them write.  Write till they get it right.  See, they write an apology to the person they wronged.  However, they can't bring up the wrong doing.  This is more of how they feel & for them to see what it means to hurt another person.  Once they finish the apology, we check it.  No errors allowed. If errors, they do it again.  See, we know they'll have to do it again and that's the whole point here.  Until the letters are perfect, they are grounded.  They at first think they'll write a sloppy apology, blame someone else and be ungrounded in a day.  They are learning quickly that's not the case.  They are learning their actions do effect other people.  And folks, this will NOT be learned quickly.  Not w/ a child effected by FAS.  More on all this later.  Way past time for paper work.  I have 40 minutes, plan to do quite a bit of paperwork and then go to bed.  I'm beat.  enjoy your week. 

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