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Thursday, September 03, 2015

#throwbackthursday


At our favorite restaurant, September 2, 2011.

ntodd

September 3, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Blessed Be The Childfree


Zoey photobombs our traditional first day picture.


On our way!


Almost there.


The poor, unsuspecting markers.


Daddy, I'm so boooooooored.

ntodd

September 1, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Monday, August 31, 2015

Daddy Daze

So we've started walking to school with C&J, friends from the road behind our house.  With Little C (and now Big C, who decided that would be more fun than riding the bus from her house), that makes quite a parade through the woods to deliver the big kids.

Sammy's settling into the kindergarten routine pretty well.  A full day tires him out enough that he goes to bed much more easily than he used to.  The nurse gives him his 2nd dose of meds after lunch, and it still seems to be working fine.  He's had his first couple school lunches, too, which the boy really enjoys--although today's menu choice was unsatisfactory, so he demanded I pack his dinosaur bag this morning.

We drop off at the gym, where almost everybody gathers to chat with friends and/or eat breakfast before heading to their classrooms.  Sam used to be rather intimidated by scores of other kids milling about, but not so much any more.  And of course Sadie is Miss Confident, going up to everybody she knows (which is a surprisingly large number of kids) and saying good morning, giving hugs, and otherwise being charming.

Our baby girl and Little C begin their pre-k adventure tomorrow.  They get along very well so mornings are fairly non-controversial and devoid of stress, yet I admit that I'm rather looking forward to their being out of my hair for 3.75 hours twice a week.  It'll just be me, Mex, and the cats, sitting around staring.  Weird.

ntodd

August 31, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Friday, August 28, 2015

#throwbackthursdayonfriday


How did such a little guy grow into a lion?

ntodd

August 28, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Thursday, August 27, 2015

A Whole New School Adventure


Taken by Principal Dodge yesterday.

ntodd

August 27, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (2)

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Quiet, Too Quiet


Sam demanded to see if the General Store had reopened yet.  Not until next week, reportedly.


Then the boy wanted to visit the big cemetery to take some pictures.  So much like his daddy.


This is the stone I was hunting for.  More on John Crown in a bit.


Sam naturally noticed a stone with a Samuel.  This lady was born before Vermont joined the Union.


The school before all hell breaks loose tomorrow.  I can't wait.

ntodd

August 25, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (2)

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Convenient Instruction Of Youth

With Samuel's first day of kindergarten tomorrow (Sadie's pre-k career starts next week), I have thoughts of Vermont's commitment to education rumbling anew in my brain.  Consider this excerpt from A History of Fletcher Vermont:

The Beers Franklin County Atlas (1871) [ed note: look here!] shows ten districts with a school in each.  For reasons unknown, there is no District 10, but there is District 11 in the northeast part of town...The buildings were so spaced throughout the town that no child, theoretically, would need to walk more than two miles to school, one way...Consolidation of schools gradually took place from the early 1930s, the Great Depression, through the next three decades until the new school was constructed ΒΌ mile south of Binghamville in 1962.

That "new" building is still operating today, with some addition and modification.  Voters rejected a district consolidation plan about 4 years ago, and last year rejected a bond for another expansion.  So there are significant space issues, but nothing like what some schools have to deal with. 

Anyway, from the beginning of our Republic, education has been extremely important, as Ira Allen noted in his History of Vermont:

The greatest legislators from Lycurgus down to John Lock, have laid down a moral and scientific system of education as the very foundation and cement of a State ; the Yermontese are sensible of this, and for this purpose they have planted several public schools, and have established a university, and endowed it with funds, and academic rewards, to draw forth and foster talents.

It should come as no surprise that this is codified in our constitution:

Section 68: [A] competent number of schools ought to be maintained in each town unless the general assembly permits other provisions for the convenient instruction of youth.

Talk about convenient!  I fully expect both Sam and Sadie to attend the same facilities--walking through our woods with their friends--until they graduate from 6th grade and move on to other area schools.

ntodd

August 25, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Monday, August 24, 2015

Intersections And Such


Sadie says goodbye to C&C on Friday.


Show me love!


From 104a on Saturday.


Now on 104.


Driving through the Intersection.

ntodd

August 24, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Thursday, August 20, 2015

#throwbackthursday


Not from long ago, but almost a lifetime since this was the pre-meds epoch when I could rarely get a shot of Sam with eye contact.

ntodd

August 20, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Monday, August 17, 2015

Scenes From A Trip


Our set piece.


Dunno, I just liked it.


Sam has been afraid to walk Mex since one bad experience, but he requested it today and did great.


You know me and signs.

Been a tiring, fun weekend, capped off by a meeting-by-phone to deal with Town Stuff this evening.  Ericka has some pics, I have a few others and some non-Instagrams I wanna highlight with a post about our larger journey with Samuel, and I still intend to address Bernie and #BLM with some new context as we march on, but that's gotta wait.

Plus tomorrow: I am on tap to build some bunk beds and prolly fuck up another finger or two in the process.

ntodd

August 17, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Saturday, August 15, 2015

This Is A Fertile Land


Sadie spontaneously re-enacts a favorite scene from Firefly.

ntodd

PS--She gets around.

August 15, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Friday, August 14, 2015

Fridaycontrolledsubstanceblogging

So here we are in the 3rd week of Sam's Great Adderall Adventure, and things are going quite swimmingly overall.  The first level of titration with 2.5mg in the morning and at lunch worked well enough to show the drug's potential, and now we're doing 5mg/2.5mg for a week to see if it lasts longer with greater impact, and if any side effects develop.  If all continues without a hitch, we'll punch it up to 5/5.

Samuel's improved focus is truly remarkable.  It's to the point that, even if his appetite is being a little suppressed, he's sitting still long enough to eat more.  He hardly ever anxiously checks in anymore, and will voluntarily leave the room to do his own thing, or play with Sadie for extended periods.

We do run into the famous 4pm Meltdown on most days, hence the increased dosage.  He also tends to cry a bit more easily, which apparently is common.  Perhaps without so much monkey brain distraction, he can more fully experience feelings?  Dunno.

Anyway, in our follow-up appointment on Monday, the doc immediately noticed what a difference there was between now, the previous fluoxetine experiment, and our intake visit.  "Night and day," he said.  Indeed.

Speaking of night, one significant benefit for our family as a whole is that Sam can now more easily get to sleep, and sleeps through the night in his own bed.  No more panicked waking in the wee hours, screaming and crying and disturbing everybody else.  A big source of stress now mitigated.

The doctor also noticed that Sam seems happier.  That's certainly our experience, demonstrated by his no longer nervously chewing on his shirts, and in photographs we see genuine smiles from a beautiful child who makes eye contact.  

He even chats with people in public.  Now if we can just get him to stop telling strangers about how he lost a tooth and has a super loose one as well...

ntodd

August 14, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Thursday, August 13, 2015

#throwbackthursday


Puppy fun at our favorite lodge in Dover, VT, last August. Headed down there this weekend for the annual pilgrimage.

ntodd

August 13, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

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Wednesday, August 12, 2015

My Life, My Universe, My Everything


Had a hot date last weekend with some random chick whose birthday it happens to be today.

ntodd

August 12, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (4)

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Sunday, August 09, 2015

Parc Safari


Lotsa horns.


We came prepared.


Stampede!


Love nips?


Ferocious turtles.


This guy.


Meta selfie.


Snacks.


Tourists in their native habitat.


Chimps in an unnatural habitat.


Oh, hi!


Mufasa is hot and tired.

ntodd

August 9, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (4)

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Friday, August 07, 2015

To Canada!


So we went to the border after Coventry.


The kids sat in vaguely familiar chairs on the US side of the line.


Shot this under the watchful eye of border patrol (who were not present last time we were here in '08).


If I'd had my wits about me, I would've shot the border line, which is less open and covered with flower pots now, but the zombies had me spooked.


Samhenge!


"I think there's a snake in there..."


"Holy shit, there is!"  [ed note: it was a cricket.]


Let's get the fuck out of Canada!


Safely back to Bog Road and our Guard Beaver.

ntodd

August 7, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (1)

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To Coventry!


Congregational Church of Coventry (est 1810, unclear when it went defunct).


Veterans Memorial (Civil War and Spanish American War).


Four men of color from Coventry served in the 54th (more on them in a bit).


Pritsky Children, To Arms!


I didn't tell them about the barrel-dwelling arachnid.


Eh, I liked the overexposure.

 


Orne bridge connecting Coventry and Irasburg.


Ericka likes barns, I like signs: National Farmers Organization collective bargaining sign from the 1950s.

More pics and other exciting stuff to come...

ntodd

August 7, 2015 in Family Life, These United States | Permalink | Comments (1)

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Thursday, August 06, 2015

A Lawn Has No Soul

FTR, I recently reclaimed a significant portion of our property so we'd have more lawn for the kids to run around on.  I'm not obsessive about mowing--I've got an electric push mower that mulches, in contrast to most of the neighbors who have riding mowers--and we don't fertilize or have a monoculture growing.  We just like having some open space in our nook at the end of a road.  The vast majority of our land is woods and meadow.

I really don't get the fascination with perfect lawns, even having grown up in suburbia.  We're very lucky to live in a place that doesn't force us to do anything to fit in.

ntodd

August 6, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (1)

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#throwbackthursday


That cat has been dead a long time.

ntodd

August 6, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (2)

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Thursday, July 30, 2015

Stimulant Report: Day Two

Things are still going well with our new friend, Adderall.  I really appreciate all the comments here and on FB about other people's experiences with the medication and attention deficits (both kids' and adults').

Samuel's teacher reported today that he's done well this week, and noticed that he was asking a lot of questions, looking for reassurance.  Could be a bit of that initial euphoria some people get when starting on the drug, perhaps combined with his concerns over this being the last day of summer school?

On the way home the boy was definitely hyper-talkative, but responded very well when I asked him to tone it down.  He was able to immediately put on the brakes, and remain quiet and contemplative for minutes on end, which is a welcome relief.

So Sam's on a relatively even keel.  We definitely could tell when the stuff was wearing off last night, and he was extremely motorific this morning until the meds kicked in.  A marked difference between on and off.

We're so very grateful that we've still got a few weeks before kindergarten begins to make tweaks.  But man, it's been great already and we bask in optimism as the adventure continues.

ntodd

July 30, 2015 in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (1)