Sunday, October 07, 2007

Kid Round-Up

I haven't heard from Carl in a couple of months. I'm officially teetering between annoyed and worried. I know it is not unlike him to drop off the radar for a while. Still, if you see him, tell him to call home.

Evan is doing very well at school. He is enormously busy and happy. He calls regularly, and stops by to get his mail. He is a college freshman.

David stopped by for a few hours today. We chatted and had our usual marathon of cards. I think I mentioned that he is the only one who will play cards with me. He told me that he and his roommate are planning on going to one of the state universities (not the one near here that Evan is going to) next year, so he will have to finish off his GED pretty soon. I'll believe it when I see it, but it is the first time he has been the one to bring up finishing his education and it is a positive step.

David by the way is completely supports the idea that I would upgrade Frankie's mp3 player to one that will play Netlibrary books. His sympathies are completely with Frankie. David knows what it is like to come into this house owning little to nothing and see all the electronics the boys have collected over the past decade. David also knows that most of the stuff was purchased with money given to them by relatives for birthday and Christmas -- except for the things that were bought by Grandpa during his summer visits of course. There are only a few things which they can claim to have "worked" for by saving allowance.

We'll see. I have a fair collection of audiobooks that he can listen to on the iPod several of which I purchased for the boys to listen to while traveling during the summer. Frankie is interested in listening to Eragon and The Eldest, both of which I have. so I think I will wait and see if he continues to enjoy the books and then make a decision.


  1. Good luck with that decision...and of course don't let the kids pressure you into feeling guilty.

    Perhaps Frankie should be given the opportunity to earn a fancier MP3 player?

  2. does he like harry potter? he seems like a kid who might get into the whole HP world. they can be downloaded on an ipod, if i really put my mind to it, i might manage to remember where! i agree with david, coming into a house where the other kids have all sorts of electronics that have been gifted in one way or another and you have none must be tough. somehow doesn't seem fair to ask him to try to save his money for the upgrade. i can see that sowing the early seeds of resentment. but, that's just me and i am an old softy!

  3. Mrs Butter B4:21 PM

    About the contacts (I'm posting this here because I'm an idiot and clicked teh wrong place, oh well)

    Here's what works for kids with sensitive eyes. Have Frankie practice touching his eye by pulling down his lower lid, and gently touching his eyeball (the white part) with a saline coated finger. (SPECIAL tip: Switch to Walmart brand saline, for some reason it seems to be less irritating than Bausch & Lomb, don't know why)

    Have him practice multiple times throughout the day, until he can do it with no issue. Ask him to randomly touch his eye in front of you to make sure he can. ALways use a wet (with saline) finger to do it.

    Once he can do that easily, he'll have a lot less probs with the contacts.

    Another tip- have him put the contact in while in a room with medium light. Just enough light to see clearly (like sunlight) not flourescent light.

    And once he gets one contact in, filck the light off and allow his eye to "accept" the contact in the dark for a minute or so before he tries to function.

    Other tips: Once he has the contact on his finger, have him squirt (or you do it) a very small drop of saline inside the contact, then tilt the contact aginst the palm of his hand to knock out a bit of the saline. Then put the contact in. That little bit of saline helps the contact suction to the eye and soothe before the eye can resist it.

    Once the contact is on his eye, have him roll his eyes (all teenagers seem to inherently know how to do this, except when applying contacts. Go figure!) before he lets go of his lid.

    HOpe this helps. I've now coached my own preteen daugther and my hubby (Both big eye-phobes) and they love them.

  4. As a huge fan of Netlibrary and the Creative Zen V, I'll point out that you can get refurbished units from Creative for much less money. Also, you could get a 1 GB model that he can use only for audio books, and keep his current MP3 player for music. You can get a refurbished 1GB Zen V for $40, and a 4GB Zen V Plus is $80, with other models inbetween.

    Good luck deciding what the right thing to do is!

  5. I was using my very cheap mp3 player to play audio books and though yes there was no way to bookmark the chapter I was still able to download anything from the library with the help of some free software I put on my computer. The only thing I had to do was end the listening session at the end of a chapter and remember where I left off. I dont recall the software but I am sure it is still available online somewhere.

  6. Thanks Martha, That would work for me, but not for Frankie.

    He frustrates too easily. The player I bought him will play the books, but he had to remember where he was and he ended up in tears trying to fast-forward to that spot.

    He has a couple of books on my iPod and that is working for him for now.


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