Thursday, December 07, 2006

Happy *really* belated Halloween! The morning

Please note that this was written a week ago, but sat in my draft folder until today (oops!):

I'm writing today from the home of -41 degree weather (with the windchill). Top it off with the fact that our furnace has shut down 4 times since last Thursday. But in spite of the cold, I am still thrilled to be living in this city. At least it's not damp and wet like it was in Ontario through most of the winter. And I have no problem with the cold as long as there is sunshine and we have plenty of that. Just pray my furnace keeps working. That being said. I am finally back online to post a few cute photos from our Hallowe'en (if I can remember that far back).

Jake's Hallowe'en started earlier in the week as he got to dress up in his costume for Beavers.
Jake was pretty proud of his zombie costume since it was mostly homemade with the help of Granny and Grandma

The girls at Owen and Will's nursery school put in many hours of practice with the boys for 3 weeks before the big day.. to have them get used to wearing their costumes. Jake and I were invited to participate in their Halloween party so that they could show off their new skills. We were lucky to have Auntie Boom up for a visit, so she was able to come as well.

Erin - one of the head co-ordinators of the nursery school

Courtney - one of the boys' aides at the school

Erin - an aide at the nursery school and in our home in the afternoons

Here is Pam - the head "teacher" at the school, trick-or-treating with our friend, Owen M.

Here is Ella the elephant - the siblings got to join in the fun as well

Owen M. the lion did a great job of keeping on his hood.. ask Mom how many hours of practice that took!

Owen was tired out after the grueling task of begging door to door for candy.

Will was at attention at circle-time beside his friend, Harrison.

The whole morning was an amazing experience for me to watch. Our kids are doing so well in their school and programs and we take such pride in everything they are accomplishing, be it learning new daily living skills, imitation or matching, etc. But to see how important it is to their teachers to teach the boys skills that can let them be typical kids doing typical kid things.. it really makes me emotional and I am sincerely filled with such gratitude that our support system (our aides, our teachers, social workers, etc) value the same things that we do and they are dedicated to make it happen.

Just imagine the process and I wish you could have seen how cute the kids looked as they went through their routine: lining up at the nursery school door with plastic pumpkins in hand. Each pumpkin had a labelled photograph of candy that the children learned to hand over to whoever opened their office door (they trick-or-treated in the same office building where the nursery school is located). This photograph was their form of communicating "trick-or-treat" and the kids understood that they then had to wait with their pumpkin basket extended to receive the exchange of candy. Upon the opening of the doors, with the employees inside already anticipating the kids' visits, all of us in the hall yelled "trick or treat" with no upset or tantrums. The kids shyly (Owen) or aggressively (Will) went into the office to do their exchange, then they all patiently waited until it was time to move on to the next door. It was great.

I admit that there are many times when we assume that the boys are indifferent to what we are doing as a family. Activities are mostly determined based on what Jake wants to do and whether Owen and Will will have the patience to follow along. Very rarely do the twins actively participate in the activity, but we go through the motions with them anyway. This year, the boys were able to be a real part of it. I can only say thanks to their school for making that happen.

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