Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Very Full Life

I'm sure you've noticed I have not posted in a while.  Everyday I mean to - I've been learning so much I'd like to write about, both for my own internal processing and integration and to share with you all.

This year, Bill and I have decided to add back in neurodevelopmental programs to help shore up several places where each child seem to be struggling.  What does this really mean? Thanks to an evaluation with my friend Donna Bateman (one of the most dedicated mamas I know and a true delight), who trained with the Family Hope Center,  I'm helping the kids do lots of reflex stimulations (as explained by Donna here and by another site I found here) and creeping and crawling. Yes, creeping and crawling like puppies and crocodiles.  Remember, the brain is a muscle that grows through use and when we spend time on our bellies and hands and knees, we organize the pons and mid-brain, areas responsible for hearing, reading, writing, emotional control, following many step commands, plus tons more. And by we, I mean my kids!

To quicken the neurodevelopmental work, we're focusing on some important complimentary areas - especially nutrition, still sticking with the paleo theme (plus we're about to start chasing the Candida plague around here) and integrative manual therapy.

Of course there is always the academic work, though scaled back some, we need to get through in a day.  Plus all the fabulous classes our Seattle homeschool community provides.  Right now either one or both of the kids is doing: Japanese class, piano lessons, hip-hop dance, math class (with our math hero, Jenn), girl choir, guitar, soccer and scouts.  Whew.  And all the associated driving.

In what seems like a true act of self-indugence, I've signed up for the Advanced Studies Program with the Neufeld Institute.  I can't even put to words how much fun I'm having learning more deeply about the developmental attachment paradigm Dr. Neufeld has created.  I've just finished a training for his Vital Connections course and will do my first practicum facilitating it in January.  Somehow at the same time as my training class, I volunteered to host another Intensive 1 group.  Intense has been the correct word for doing two Neufeld courses at the same time!  So much fun, I managed to double schedule again for January when I'll facilitate the Vital Connection course while completing a training in his Making Sense of Play course. At the end of the 2 year program I expect to be facilitating both the Vital Connection and Art and Science of Transplanting Children for the adoption community in the Puget Sound area, helping moderate a dynamic Neufeld focused community in the Seattle area and using the knowledge I have as a parent coach to support other parents.

While I truly love the work Dr. Neufeld is doing, I also adore and deeply value Holly vanGulden's work with developmental attachment and adoption.  I did a 3 day training with her in Minnesota this September and have been integrating what I learned in my daily interactions with my kids.  I've also been sharing more about it with other adoptive parents as I see how much Holly's knowledge and experience speaks specifically to what we see in our adopted kids.  In the pause between my Neufeld courses, I plan to sit down and brush up on her training manual.

Not something I'm likely to post much about on the world wide web, I still put quite a bit of time and energy each week into my personal growth hobby.

My brag for the month is that 6 days a week for the past 3 weeks, I've been in bed asleep by 8:30, and mostly slept until 7 or 8:00.  I'll keep on sleeping 10+ hours a night until I'm naturally waking up rested around 6am.  Chipping away at my apparently enormous sleep debt may be the only thing that really helps me keep all these balls I'm juggling in the air fairly gracefully.

Add these to my daily attempts to run the household, connect with my husband, keep the dog well exercised, practice guitar, present delicious nutritious food 5x a day and somehow fit back in my beloved CrossFit, and sadly, I just can't post right now.

My hope is that once I have a few training courses under my belt I'll have more brain space to write about the things I'm learning.  For now, though, consider my blog on pause.

Feel free to email me or call if you have questions or want to say hi.  I'll miss you all!

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