….where do I start, hmmmm. I’ve been neglecting my blog this week, because it’s been mad crazy over here. The long weekend is upon us, and I decided to go see my sisters and family with the kids. Yay- so fun. Planned for a few weeks, dinner is organized at my one sisters house, blah blah blah. So life continues on, it’s my biggest sisters birthday next week, so I went out shopping on Tuesday and found absolutely nothing inspiring. A little background on my sister Sarah: she is considered ‘non verbal’ (but those familiar with her can understand her limit speech sounds), she was diagnosed with C.P back when she was 18months old. She has epilepsy, and a learning delay. She has the cognitive abilities similar to a young child, but she’s turning 42. As we got older and her symptoms progressed, my mother at the time started researching other alternatives, and we discovered that Rett syndrome is more on par with my sister’s symptoms and presentation. I could talk for hours about this, and if you ever want to, just reach out. Another thing about my sister, is that I am her favourite human. I don’t know if it’s because I’m the youngest, or if it’s because she always knew my brain was wired differently too, but for whatever reason- I am her go to. My other sister Rachel is loved deeply by Sarah, too and they have a special bond, but the bond between Sarah and I is inexplainable. Ok- so- Sarah has an eclectic taste in interests. Lion King. Michael Jackson. Cats. Birds. Animals that are cute. Steven Tyler. Willie Nelson. Elton John. Harley Davidsons (or any motorcycle for that matter). She loves big burley men with tattoos and stained beards , that wear leather and ride a Harley. She “hates” mud or mess (but LOVES to talk about them, so they are perfect subjects for conversation starters for her). She loves babies and dolls. She loves Zoot from the muppets. She loves to colour and she loves witches. Yes…..witches. Or “Woos” as she calls them. So over the years- we’ve gotten her every book, poster. Etc that covers her interests. So what’s left ? How can you get something for someone who collects everything , has everything , and has such different interests? Well- I make her stuff. Last year I sewed her a conversation blanket. I made custom squares featuring all of her favourite things and various tactile textures. It was meant to be a lap blanket to keep on her couch (she won’t let people sit on that couch except for me and my kids, or Rachel our other sister) but she’s got it hung on her wall. She loves it and I absolutely loved making it. So what could I do this year? I looked around online and in stores for inspiration and was coming up fairly short. I found some great activity books to practice basic skills but that’s not fun, that’s cognitive, development and fine motor skills. (I bought them, of course!) Wandering the dollar store I found a few more colouring books and things that featured “the Lion Guard” cause I can’t find lion king anywhere. I then stumbled upon an amazing sketch book the size of a journal. I loved it. I picked it up and knew instantly what I’d do.
I’ve been creating a custom activity book since Tuesday night. It features 20 pages of watercolor drawings , she adds water to a paint brush and the drawings transform into paintings. 20 pages of black outlined drawings so she can colour them. Various inspirational messages and sayings throughout. And then some blank pages for her to add her own personal flair to the book. I also grabbed a wooden box with a latch on it, and a bunch of pencil crayons. Figured I could customize it for her, fill it with pencil crayons, and she’s got a new storage box for her colours , that is easily found, referenced, and widely used. I’m loving how they’ve all turned out, but it is exhausting lol. I’m not sure why I do this to myself every damn year. I do know why- because I love her and I love to make her wonderful things; but sometimes I think I’m certifiable.
So what else this week….oh- since I’m going to see my sisters, I will also have to see my mother. (Sarah lives at home with our mother and our dad). My mother and I do not get along, she is a narcissist. I won’t go into details, those who know what that means – will get it. I am the “scape goat” and so, our relationship, is dysfunctional at best. But I go so I can see my sisters and our dad, and so my children have an opportunity to have a relationship with my family, as well. They are able to make up their own decisions on how close or how distant they choose to be, and I’m not sure how many more years of visiting we are going to get. It breaks my heart, but it is our reality. But this- this causes stress and anxiety for me. Driving 3.5hrs with the kids on my own can be chaotic at best- and then we get there and my stress level skyrockets before I’ve even gotten out of the car. I’m walking on eggshells the minute I arrive. It’s…..hard. So that’s been on my mind this week. I’ve finally gotten myself ready and prepared……and driving home from work yesterday, my damn car breaks. Seriously.
……so the van nearly stalls while I’m driving home, chug chug chug …..then woke back up enough for me to toss $30 gas in it (didn’t want to fill incase I’m told to replace!) I get home and panic. Husband gets home and takes the car for a spin around the block- it’s grinding , chugging, straining. (This car has given me nothing but problems the last 5 or so years- I’ve owned it for 10. I put so much money into it for repairs- but we decided in Nov that we will replace it this summer) ……come on baby, I just want 3 more months.
So now, I have to rent a car to go visit my family , I have to get my car to the garage- to be looked at on Monday, and then figure out what the next step will be.
I’d like to wake up now. Pinch me?
In happier news :
Here’s some images of my projects from this week. What do you think!?