The BVM has a new home.
Well I no longer live in the lovely 'shams of Syndey but am still pretty close by and still in the inner west which we just love. The weather has been horrible so I am very glad not to be in a tiny leaky house in this rain. The kids would agree as the new house has an enclosed verandah out the back which is their playroom.
I have done a bit of the organising that I had been putting off so am feeling a bit virtuous tongiht - finally Hannah is on the waiting list for the Rainbow Club - a swimming club for children with disabilities - and should be offered a place about this time next year unless more instructors emerge from somewhere.
I also rang the local government preschool and while they don't take them until they are 4 they sounded very nice and were certainly interested in what 'extra' needs Hannah may have and open to considering whether they felt they could meet them. I rang a private preschool as well and they were also very friendly and open and seem to be well set up to assist with preparing Hannah for school or certainly open to catering for her individual needs - they are also cheaper than the long day care the twins are currently in which is a bonus.
I passed my first semester at Uni - enjoyed it immensely and learned so much. Next semester I am enrolled in an EI unit which I am really looking forward to for obvious reasons - Macquarie Uni has a special needs program there that was started as specific for kids with DS in the 70's (linked with the program at University of Washington). I have organised to complete a practicum with ASPECT - working with 3-5 yo with autism. The only reservation I have is the unit is usually done at the end of the masters prgoram rather than at the beginning so I hope I can cope with the demands of it - obviously I want to do it now before Hannah is 'too old'.
Read a wonderful article in SMH column Two of Us on the weekend - where one of the 2 spoke of how her husband had always been considered the 'dummy' of the family because he hadn't achieved good grades at school and how when she (a Uni student) had told her family about him they had worried that he wasn't her intellectual equal. She wrote that he had taught her to appreciate an innate intelligence - and I know that DS was not at all what they were thinking but it made me smile and have a wee tear in the eye too. My Hannah is SO SMART - smart as a whip in fact. I don't know whether it is the same 'innate intelligence' referred to in the article but she definitely has an intelligence - albeit one that is not generally valued in our society.
Hannah knows the value of a cuddle. She can be the lively clown giggling hysterically with her father or making her serious brother laugh. She can be the carer and the nurturer making sure that a tin of biscuits is shared around with everyone. She can be the devious minx who thinks making loud snoring sounds will fool her father and I into leaving the bedroom before she is asleep - who pops her head up to see whther we are still in the room - if we are: the head goes back down on the pillow, if not we will soon hear her pitter patter down the hall. She knows that persistence pays off and never gives up. She tries things over and over and watches carefully to really try and understand what you are doing so that she can do it to. She enjoys being creative, loves drawing and appreciates art. She celebrates every milestone with enthusiasm and loves her family to bits. She is funny and sad and clever - and with such persistence I find it hard to believe that there will be people who are so 'intelligent' that they never see that - Hannah as she should be. Hannah the smart little girl who is a great asset to this community.
The big house has proved invaluable when entertaining - have some lovely photoes of the 7 kids here all watching tv, playing music and eating dinner at the kids table from lunch on the weekend but some clutz (yes me) dropped the camera and now it is broken! Will post some of the photoes when I can.