Friday, July 31, 2009

VBS, Swim Lessons, and Preschool

We are at the end of the second of three very busy weeks. Two weeks ago, Owen attended a week of Vacation Bible School (VBS) at our church from 6:30 to 8:30 in the evening. Since Ellen and I both work full time, we had to rush home to prepare and eat dinner quickly so that Ellen and Owen could get to the church on time. After the first couple of hectic days, our sitter was kind enough to offer to bathe and feed Owen before we picked him up so that we would not have to scramble every evening. Her kids also attended VBS so she just included Owen as part of her preparation routine.

Owen singing during the last night of VBS

Owen had a great time at VBS. Each night he would give me his three year old account of the evenings activities and proudly display his crafts. One night, the Pastor gave Owen a river rock for singing so well and Owen was so proud of his reward that he had to take it to bed with him. Needless to say, the performance by the kids at the end of the week was excellent and we all enjoyed an ice-cream social to celebrate the end of the busy week.

The end of VBS happened to coincide with the All Ohio Bike Festival motorcycle light parade. Since the parade route went right past the church, we set up chairs and waited for the parade to start. Owen passed the time running and rolling down the grass hill with his cousins. Clara was happy to be out of the house and up past her bed time. The procession of motorcycles was shorter than years past, but everyone still enjoyed the show. During the 5 minute car ride from the church to our house, both tired kids passed out in their car seats. Fortunately, I was able to wake Owen up long enough to use the potty and to get a quick washcloth wipe down.

Watching the motorcycle light parade after the last night of VBS

This week, Owen started the first of two weeks of swim lessons from 6 to 6:30 in the evening. So we began two more weeks of rushing home so that we could get to the pool on time. Although Owen was tentative about putting his head completely under water at first, he really enjoys playing as a group with similarly aged peers and has gotten increasingly comfortable with the water each day. It is nice to see him adapt quickly when placed in a group of kids that he has never met.

In addition to swim lessons, Owen started his first year of preschool this week. We have enrolled Owen as a peer model in the preschool run by the County Board of Developmental Disabilities. Each class consists of a mix of kids with developmental delays and "typically developing" peers. Students with delays benefit from interaction with peers that demonstrate age-appropriate social and language skills while the peers benefit by learning that their classmates with delays are more like themselves than different. Owen enjoyed his first day of school and is happy that he finally gets to ride the school bus.

Owen and Nathan (the baby sitter's son) showing off their backpacks before the first day of preschool.

Getting on the bus for the first time!!

The week after next should bring some relief; however we might feel a little lost when we do not have to scramble to get out the door.

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