Saturday, July 26, 2008


It's Saturday afternoon, and I am taking some time out after a very busy day.  It's Billy-Joe's birthday tomorrow so I have been preparing some food for the bbq. Oma and Opa will come, and Nanny and Darby too.  We have a friend of Billy-Joe's staying over for the weekend, so Billy-Joe is pretty happy about that.  

I have made him a Malteser cake.  Well I think 'cake' is a very loose term. It has no flour in it and isn't even baked.  It's got chocolate, golden syrup, crushed biscuits, butter and maltesers in it. All boiled up and set in the fridge, should be delicious and served with a chocolate ganache mmmmmmm.  I have also made a Caponata, with eggplant, capsicum, tomatoes, celery, garlic, onion, pine nuts, olives and a sweet red wine vinegar sauce. Tastes divine. I have also marinaded the chicken in a paste made up of curry powder, chillies, coriander root, garlic, sugar and oil. Tomorrow I will make a sauce to go with the chicken. Hopefully I will get some pictures and have a chance to upload the recipes. I have been slack with uploading recipes of late. I generally take photos, but never post them which is  a shame, as I forget all the yummy things I make.  Mum is marinading some pork ribs, one of my favourite things, and is making her coleslaw which is a solid family favourite.  We plan on talking lots, drinking wine, laughing and generally enjoying each others' company.  

Billy-Joe is getting an ipod shuffle and a playstation Pirates of the Caribbean game from us. I am sure he will be a very happy boy.  

I have also made Billy-Joe's card. He is right into the Sims at the moment, hence the little icon on it. No doubt I am infringing copyright somewhere along the line!! He just loves images of all his favourite things, so I know he will appreciate it.

Work this week was great, but very challenging and provocative as well.  Tuesday and Wednesday were good days, pretty cruisy, I must be getting used to working with kids I don't know well, and working in settings I don't know well. I had to cook with a group on Wednesday and just made stuff up (thank goodness I'm good at that). The muffins weren't that great, in my opinion, but they sold like hot cakes, especially as we sold soup with them and the weather was pretty revolting.  Thursdays group was damn hard work.  I had three kids and there were three of us, myself and two aides, thankfully one was a male.  One girl was completely non verbal and was basically locked into her chair, or in a play room. She just wonders otherwise and sits in front of the window, always looking for a way out. Another boy was basically non verbal, very autistic with ADD as well.  Actually I would add ADHD to that diagnosis too.  He too was always looking for an escape.  Moving him and the girl to another room, was diabolical. They would both drop to the ground or try and run away. Both things nearly pull your arms out of your shoulders. It was teeming with rain, so running after them through puddles wasn't fun.  Duty was spent inside, blocking exits, being pushed, shoved, pulled and generally harassed. It's an interesting thing standing there with your hand on a child's chest with your other hand up in a stop sign, all the while not giving them eye contact, because the whole thing is after all just a game to them - and I refuse to enter into that kind of repartee with the child.  This child also has a collection of about hundred cds which he wears on a string around his neck. This is his security blanket, but in my view creates more problems than it solves. They use it as a way of coaxing him to do things, but it didn't work.  I took them off him toward the end of the day, and he actually forgot about them for the afternoon. Moving him from one room to another, was impossible. We had to drag him, feet first, along the ground. Thankfully he had on two jumpers and the floor was slippery, so no injury to anyone ( or we naturally wouldn't have done it). Time out works - but needed constant attention as he could climb over the locked safety gate!  Another boy has mild CP with intellectual impairment and no verbal skills. His signing was limited to the most basic of commands.  He basically transitioned well, but was non compliant in the room. He became difficult when things didn't go his own way. We cooked (I use that term loosely too).  We made bacon and egg muffin burgers.  He cut the bacon (ate more than he cut) cut the muffins in half, (again ate them) and grated the cheese. I let him stir the bacon, even though it didn't need stirring but participation is crucial.  I then sat him down to butter the muffins as I wasn't letting him near the eggs. He became cranky when things weren't moving quickly enough for him. He got up from his chair, slammed it backwards with his full weight and I was in the way, and wedged up against the bench with him leaning on my bad leg and hip. Oy! I saw stars!! I burst into tears and they quickly pulled him off me, and I took some deep breathes and recovered fairly quickly. Thankfully my leg didn't end up hurting anymore than it already did, and the initial pain subsided very quickly. The burgers were a hit, all three kids hooked in.  

The afternoon was a little quieter, after I cleaned pee up off the floor, chair and footrest. One child (ADHD) was drawing on the white board with crayon, while we weren't looking. We left him go, he was quiet for ages after that.  Apart from reading two stories in the morning, which two of the kids listened too, and making the muffins, there were no other valuable learning situations.  It was basic crises and damage control all day - ensuring the kids are kept safe at all times.  I earned my money that day. The aides are worth their weight in gold, and definitely don't get paid enough.

I have two days booked for next week, which are supply days, so pay will be as if I work a whole week, so I am pleased about that.  Rock on pay day! It's been a month and things are not good. I hate not having money in my account.  

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