Monday, April 28, 2008

Slow but sure progress

Having a 1p36er, you never know what to expect. So whenever Misha does something new, it's always a pleasant surprise, even when you have been working with him on it forever.

Misha's fine motor counselor(?) from Kids On the Move decided that the once a month visit was too often. Ira has been doing such a good job with him that every other month was as much as he needed. Woohoo! We have noticed some improvements in this area but it's nice for a confirmation. For instance, he started stacking himself. After working with him for over a year on this (probably closer to 2 years), he finally decided to do it. He also figured out, and has developed the muscles needed, how to turn the key on a cookie tin/music box we got last Christmas. Albeit, he can only turn it a bit, it's still the best fine motor skill yet.

Misha has also started to "run". It mostly involves a faster, arms-in-the-air, version of his walk, but it is a large improvement for someone we weren't sure was going to walk with out braces or other assistance a year ago. He runs when he is excited, just for fun, or when I tell him it's time to change a diaper.

Words are still one of his biggest challenges. He has his set of words that he "likes" and sticks with those. Then he either ignores us when we ask him to try other words, or he laughs at us. And he seems to pick up a word, but drop another sometimes, as if he gets bored with it. His newest words are "uck", "eenya" and "bee-bee" for "yuck", "liniya (line)" and "baby". "Line" is Ira turning one of his sounds into a word and using it when he is scribbling.

We also graduated him from his crib to a toddler bed. Which means that every night, I have to move him from Kiril's bed to his own. And that as soon as I put him to bed, he crawls right off to play. But, the transition was smooth.

All in all, he is progressing slowly but surely and is a "golden" child.

P.S. The picture above is of Glen Cunningham, whose legs were severely burned in a fire when he was a child and was never expected to walk unassisted, let alone become one of the fastest runners of his time.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men

Being usually poor and having a father that taught me to do things myself, I usually attempt to do things myself when possible. And so I have done with mixed results. Saturday was my biggest foul ball ever.

I have had a coolant leak for a while. It drips and drips and I have had to add fluid or water ever once in a while for weeks now. Finally, we figured it was leaking from my coolant sensor. So, I pulled it out and broke it putting it back in and bought another and put it back in. I thought that my have fixed it but, to no avail. Then dad said I should try putting some teflon tape on it. So, last Saturday, I decided to give it a whirl. I removed the sensor, put some tape on it and proceeded to put it back in.

Now understand, the location of said sensor is to say the least awkward. To remove, or install, the sensor, I had to use a deep socket with a long extension cause a regular ratchet had to large a head. Also there was only a 70 - 80 degree opening wherein I could turn the extension. And with the other junk in the way, the extension is out at a 45 degree angle. So needless to say a tedious job and kind of difficult to judge how things were going. Tighten a little, reposition the socket, tighten, reposition, tighten, etc... I was making good progress when suddenly I heard some dripping. Wait...dripping???...there should be no dripping!!!

I looked down and sure enough, I had fluid dripping underneath the car. So I whipped out my flashlight to look at my work area and saw a long silvery crack running vertically out of the socket for the coolant sensor. @&*#& #**#*@!$ !!!!!@*!$$!@
I broke my bloody car!!!

Actually, I am fairly proud of myself. I didn't scream, yell, swear (well, I sort of swore in russian...I said "The devil take it" which is somewhat like dammit), and only gave the bumper a slight kick to show the car who was boss. After all, who could I get mad at??? I was the putz that broke it. It was ALL ME!!!

It was a miserable weekend wondering how much it would take to fix it, followed by a miserable Monday knowing how much it would take to fix it, followed by miserable (hasn't ended yet) realization how much it did cost to fix it. Ira has let me off easy with only some good natured salt-in-wounds remarks. After all, we weren't going to use that $800 bucks for anything important.

Silver lining (i.e. half hearted attempt to make myself feel less stupid) -- chevy's have a problem with the manifold gasket. Eventually, it would have to be changed to the tune of $600 when it cracked and the manifold developed a leak. Now I have the updated gasket. I also got a "free" oil change. A thermostat tuneup, and my fluid swapped out. And I learned an important lesson...again: Working on cars sucks.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It's not me, so it must be you

Life is crazy. I know this cause I live in it and I am not crazy. Therefore the craziness around me must be incidental, and therefore not my fault. That's my story and I am sticking to it.

Dasha went to get her kindergarten shots today. She got two in each leg and didn't even cry. She was immensely proud of that and that she got Tweety-bird band-aids. She is quite the dancing princess and is generally very pleasant except when she decides to be whiny. And homie (papa) don't play 'dat.

I nearly had an Ivan the Terrible (among other things is known for killing his son in a fit of rage) moment with Kiril this past weekend. I wont elaborate on a blog (family who haven't heard the tale can call or chat me for details). But nevertheless, he was close to death. VERY close to death. Luckily for him I resorted just to being loud and gave him a light whap up side the head as a what-were-you-thinking gesture.

Asya is very busy. I think she will do well with a college schedule cause she has something like it now. She takes too long on her homework and is the last kid in bed every night. She was also invited to participate in this year's Feis in SLC with her dance troupe. It will be expensive, but probably a lot of fun.

Misha is still the funnest kid around. He keeps progressing sometimes in leaps, sometimes in bounds, sometimes in baby steps. When we try to get him to say new words, he usually just laughs at us or says one of his backups.

Ira is pregnant and that says most of it. She is in the potty, or on the way to the potty half the time now. The other half is spent saying how much she is tired of the potty.

The houseguest is still around. Ira happened to mention that she really didn't want to have a houseguest in the first place but wanted to do it for personal humanitarian growth. My question was why I had to suffer for her personal growth.

We are looking forward to Nikolai's (or Fyodr's...fickle, fickle Ira) grand entrance. It should nicely fall sometime between the Highland festival and the Feis. Then it's back to less sleep, more diapers, and church will get even more fun with two wiggly worms.

My computer died at work today. Nothing worse than spending a day at work trying to get another system working to be able to do your work. I left without it being up. And the dummy IT guys we pay to take care of this kind of stuff were an hour late. I hope they grabbed the right computer.

Peace out.