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Means bullet points!  Yay for lazy thinking!!

  • Mark’s foot is getting better slowly, so he’s a lot less crabby than before.
  • We chipped away at some of the visitation we got behind on from going out of town, but now we’re going to a friend’s cabin this weekend, thus setting us behind even more.  Mom and Dad are being nice about it, but I’m sure it’s annoying to them.  And unfortunately, Edna is too busy the next few weeks to help out with supervision.
  • Had a good visit with me, Mark, Nikki and their mom to go buy school supplies and some new clothes.  Had a seemingly good visit with their dad at the pool, but then Mark got really hostile and defiant when it was time to go home.  He was expressing it to me AND his dad, so I’m not sure who he was actually mad at or why, and whether it was actually just because it was the end of the day.  Either way, it really got to dad.  He seemed insulted that Mark was acting that way.
  • Finally got the kids to the dentist.  No way am I going to do all the hunting involved to find a Medicaid-dentist, so I just take them to ours and pay out of pocket.  And to make myself feel good, I’ll even tell you I even splurged on the fluoride treatment and sealant.  See, I’m not doing it for the money!!  The best part was Mark giggling through the whole appointment.  He thought it was all really funny.
  • Mark has an OT/sensory eval next week.  I just finished filling out the pre-eval questionnaire, and his results were sort of erratic, but there may actually be a specific pattern there.  But I think it also could just be due to his background and upbringing.  I’m actually interested to see how they’ll tease that out.
  • Worse part of the last week:  two of our kids french-kissing!  All four of them were upstairs in the girls room, and the stories diverge from there.  Without going into details, someone(s) was definitely lying, there were boundaries crossed that (I think) should have been obvious to the older kids, and we now have a brand new rule: no kissing other children.  Perhaps I should add a few others, like no tongue touching, no tongue rubbing, no tongue licking, and no lips bumping.  You know, just so the bases are covered.
  • Mark’s counselor is going to keep working on the repoire for a few more weeks and then start talking about boundary issues.  It’s about time.
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Crazy, hectic, no time to blog and all of a sudden it’s been two weeks since I posted!

Not that I really care about anyone who reads this, :), but actually, this has become a very valuable tool for record-keeping and holding others (okay, Mom and Dad) accountable.

So what has been going on the last two weeks?

We’ve been slogging through the visits.  I, personally, am sick of McDonald’s and Pizza Hut.  I’m spending money and gaining weight, which is always a bad trade-off in my opinion.  But until the heat passes and it’s bearable to spend four hours at a park, we’re doing a lot of lunches and dinners at fast food.

I don’t blame Mom and Dad.  Their home is just too far away for visits to take place there.  But I worry that Mark and Nikki are starting to highly associate Mom and Dad with fast food, if it wasn’t that way before.  Plus the quarter-trinket machines, which are now 75 cents [side tangent: there’s no cent key on the keyboard anymore! When did that happen?].  Dad blew 8 bucks last night on crappy little toys.  Mom has told me she has had trouble saying no to the kids in the past, and I worry that might not have changed much.

Put it all together, and the visits are not exactly quality family time.  I spend a lot of the time talking with Mom and Dad, which is nice enough, but the kids are so busy playing with happy meal toys, stuffing their faces, or begging for quarters that I don’t think they even really talk to their parents.

The good news is Mom did find someone else to do some supervising.  She should be approved in a week or so, and she lives near Mom so the visits can be at their home.

Second most important bit: stupid stupid stupid.  Found Mark and Junior in the bathroom with their pants off.  They each independently confirmed the story, and it seems Mark was in there putting his clothes in the clothes chute (it was bedtime) and Junior barged in to pee.  After he peed, he asked Mark if he wanted to show each other their penises.  Mark said sure, so they did.  Then Junior suggested they touch their penises together, so they did.  And that is apparently when I walked in.

This is just like last summer with Junior and Poet (well, the ages make a big difference.  I expect a hell of a lot more from an 8-year old regarding keeping private parts private.)  Junior didn’t seem to care at all about it; obviously, he initiated it.  They were both happy and talking normally when I walked in.  And neither of the boys have really changed the rest of their behavior around each other or anyone else.  Ollie chalked it up to normal boyhood stuff, and it’s true that there hasn’t been anything like this between them until now, but given all the problematic sexual crap with Mark, I’m annoyed, worried, and frustrated.  There have been other various allegations of sexual inappropriateness in Mark’s extended family too, as I found out at a meeting last week.

The team would like to get Eliza and Mark and Nikki together for some visits, so Mark and Eliza can start not hating each other.  Eliza’s foster family lives 45 minutes away too, and I’m not really excited about Mark and Nikki spending time at her foster home but I’m not so keen on having her here too.  She’s a surly 13 year old.  Nuff said.

Summer is fleeting, school starts in a month, and I’m enjoying summer.  I wish I had a little more time for it though.