The Museum of Ice Cream! [Los Angeles]

Thursday, September 21, 2017

A museum dedicated to ice cream. I mean, come on, how could we NOT go?!?

To be honest, I'm not even sure how I stumbled upon knowing about this place, but let me tell you, it is AMAZING. If one ever pops up in your city (or anywhere near your city!), GO. RUN. Don't walk. Sure, looking at these pictures, it's basically an Instagrammable museum, but truth be told, being there is so much more amazing than these pictures show.

A couple of my friends had been to the Museum of Ice Cream before me, so I kind of had an idea of what to expect. Tickets were selling out quickly and they kept saying that they would be leaving LA at the end of ticket sales, so I thought I was too late and would have to live vicariously through them, but then one day I received an email saying that they extended their stay in LA (and extended it again and again, I think) so I knew I had to get tickets. I signed on right when they went on sale, waited and waited in "line", and finally chose tickets for Friday, August 18th. Keep in mind this was back in May? or June? and now we had to wait. For what felt like forever.

Mason's last day of preschool was August 17th and then we went to the MOIC as an "end to summer" and "pre-kindergarten" treat. I'm sure it was more of a treat for me than anyone because Mason could have never gone and been none the wiser, but I was SO EXCITED. I literally felt like a kid on Christmas Eve.

From the ice cream "footprints" to follow to the front of the museum to the ice cream tic-tac-toe outside to the pink walls, the people who made this museum thought of everything.

We arrived slightly early and were told to wait in the "holding area" where we could sit down at picnic tables, play tic-tac-toe, play Jenga, or just hang out in the shade while we waited for our ticket time. Once it was our ticket time, we lined up against the pink wall and were sent in in small groups. The groups were about 15 people or so and there were about 45 people for our time slot, so we went in in three phases. They do this on purpose so that it's not too crowded as you walk around, which is why you never see other people in the background of the photos. They let you take your time and go as slow or fast as you want. Their only rule is that it is a forward moving museum, which means once you pass a room, you can't go back, you must always move forward.

We entered the museum and were greeted with a Dove chocolate of our choosing. I mean, I was already in heaven. Not even one minute in and I was even chocolate. I may never leave!

We were then ushered into the telephone room where we had to "make a call" and then were allowed to enter the rest of the museum.

Here we entered the "California room". There were tons of stars of famous people with ice cream themed names (like Scoop Dog instead of Snoop Dog). We were then given one of the best tasting ice creams I've ever had in my life -- churro ice cream. I'm not sure that that was the technical name, but it basically tasted identical to that. I was in heaven.

From there we entered the room of bananas. The first part had the swings with the banana wall paper and then next had all the hanging bananas. The hanging bananas were mind blowing. This was one of the rooms that we weren't allowed to touch anything. This wasn't a problem for me or Seth as much as it was for Mason as we were too busy staring in awe as to how there were hundreds and hundreds of bananas hanging from the ceiling. It truly was cool to see.

From there we entered in to the mint room which was all green. They gave us a sample of mint mochi (DELICIOUS) and taught us about the different mint plants.

From there we walked in to the room with that cool rainbow and then in to the room with the melting popsicles. We were given a sample of Dove chocolate ice cream bars when we entered. Each bar had raspberry or strawberry ice cream on the inside and was covered with chocolate on the outside.

The melting popsicle room was followed up by the gummy bear room where we got samples of gummy bears and Mason tried to feed his new friends.

This "ice cream cones thrown at the wall" room was one of my favorites to look at (and not touch!) but not my favorite for free samples. They handed out different kinds of black candies (like black licorice, etc) that I decided to pass on.

Next was the SPRINKLE POOL. I mean. Come on. A pool FULL OF SPRINKLES. Yes. It was as cool as it sounds.

They regulated how many people were in this room at a time again so you could really get the full experience. It was us and a group of three other women in there at the same time. And I think they gave us maybe two or so minutes to be in the pool. It seemed like a long time yet not long enough.

The sprinkles aren't actually real so it's not gross to get in. They are made of plastic. And get EVERYWHERE. I literally found one that fell out of the wash the other day and it's been almost a month since we went.

The very last room we got a sample of an ice cream sandwich made out of pink pancakes. It was super delicious but terribly hard to eat. By then I was pretty full (nobody told me we'd get SO many samples! I shouldn't have eaten breakfast!) so I only took a couple bites and then threw it away.

They also had an ice cream sandwich swing in this room, but some older kids were being rambunctious and we didn't get a picture with Mason on it. 

Overall, the museum was AH-MAZING! I totally want to check out the one in San Francisco if I happen to be in the area and can get tickets. I'd even want to go back to the one here in LA if I had the chance! Seriously the COOLEST museum I've ever been to. If my parents took me to more museums like this when I was a kid, I'm sure I wouldn't have complained as much. πŸ˜‰

To find out more about the Museum of Ice Cream, find them on Instagram here or their website here.

33 Things About Me On My 33rd Birthday!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Today is my birthday! And to celebrate, I thought I'd share 33 random things about me that you might not know. I've done this for the past couple years, so it makes it a little harder to come up with things that I haven't shared before, but just know that when I made this list, I didn't reference the other lists, so if anything overlaps, it's purely by coincidence and obviously very important. (Ha!)

1. I will only eat grapes, apples, pears, if they are HARD. I hate soft grapes and apples. I also hate soft bananas.

2. I have a fear of raw meat. I am obsessive about washing my hands if I've touched eggs. And I refuse to touch raw chicken or steak. I ask Seth 1,000 times if he cleaned his hands and cleaned the sink. And even then, I'm still worried about getting salmonella.

3. I prefer Dreyer's ice cream but if it's not on sale, Ralph's brand makes a pretty good alternative.

4. I HATE scary movies. And scary anything. I'd never go to a haunted house.

5. I love to have covers on me at all times. Even in the summer, I sleep with the covers on in bed and most often have a blanket on me while sitting on the couch.

6. I like Cheez-It's more than goldfish.

7. I HATE glasses on myself but think Mason's are the cutest things ever!

8. Autocorrect kills me. Sometimes it turns out funny, but 99% of the time, I want to throw my phone across the room. No I don't want to say FOOD, I want to say GOOD thank you very much.

9. I'm a flats and sandals kind of girl. Seth isn't overly tall so I never wear heels with him but I just find flats and sandals to be so much more comfortable anyway.

10. I love to get pedicures but rarely get manicures. My toe nails are always painted but my fingers nails rarely are.

11. I love my paper planner and paper to do list/what to buy at the grocery store list.

12. I love emojis and use them constantly while texting. My current favorites are πŸ˜‚πŸ™„πŸ˜πŸ’ΈπŸ˜³πŸ™ŠπŸ‘ŒπŸ» (and a few more than didn't come through correctly when I tried to copy/paste).

13. I love Frosted Mini Wheats but ONLY the ones with lots of frosting. I'm sure that eliminates any sort of health factor that the cereal might have had. When I get to the bottom of the box, I search for the ones with frosting and save the unfrosted ones for Seth.

14. I'm a brand snob on some things and could care less on others. In fact I actually like the grocery store brand Honey Nut Cheerios and Frosted Mini Wheats better than the name brand.

In case you're curious... I always go name brand on shampoo/conditioner, condiments like ranch (Hidden Valley all the way!), BBQ sauce, and 1000 island, face wash, body wash, chocolate chips, orange juice...

And I don't mind going store brand on: other condiments (ketchup, mustard, relish), things like aluminum foil and plastic storage bags, kleenex, cereal, yogurt...

15. I appreciate when online places let you pay by PayPal. Because 9 times out of 10, I'm too lazy to get up and get my wallet. Sad but true.

16. I hate place like Forever 21, Nordstrom Rack, and TJMaxx. Not because I don't like to save money (because I'm all for saving money! The more money you save is the more money you can spend, right?), but because I cannot handle shopping by size and not by style. I HATE looking through all the mediums in the store, just to find that I love something in a large that I can't find in a medium. I'd rather have the whole rack of one thing and then search through for my size.

17. I almost always order the same meal at restaurants. I find one thing that I love and I never deviate. I'm sure they have TONS of great selections, but I want the same thing. Every time.

18. I follow TONS of food blogs on bloglovin. I save TONS of recipes and make... none of them. I really should, but I just forget that they're there and then we have the same boring things over and over every week.

19. I still print recipes that I find that I like. I know they are saved on Pinterest or whatever I found them, but I can almost never find what I'm looking for again. I'd much rather know I printed it and it's in my recipe book and easy to find.

20. I used to LOVE the orange Triamenic when I was little. Is that stuff even around? I think it was used to help when you had a cold, but I would literally beg for it. I LOVE the flavor!

21. If I am bring brave and killing a bug (and not calling for Seth to do it), I always reach for one of his shoes instead of one of mine. #sorrynotsorry

22. I much prefer to stay in (or go to someone's house) vs going out. I went to a bachelorette party not too long ago and I had NO clue what to wear. I was also tired at 10pm and wanted to go home lol.

23. I LOVE shopping online. I'm 99% sure my mailman and UPS man hate me (though they should  really love me, right? job security!), but I can't help it! The sales are SO much better online. I can see all the options. Most of the time I don't have to worry about my size not being at the store. No waiting in line to try things on or to check out.

24. I hate chain emails but I hate chain Facebook messages more.

25. Sometimes I purposely park further away from a store if I think it will be easier to get in and out of the spot. Or sometimes I park close to the cart return so I don't have to walk as far to put my cart back. Or sometimes I just park far away to park in the shade.

26. I don't think of myself as overly superstitious, but I don't overly like the number 13. And I also don't overly like Friday the 13th. When I was pregnant with Mason, I was due on July 23rd. I knew there was a possibility he might come early and I just crossed my fingers that he held off until after the 13th (it was Friday the 13th!) and then he could come any time after. Thankfully he held off until the 18th :)

27. This may come as a surprise, but I'm super embarrassed to take a picture of Mason at the post office if there are other people around. Thankfully we (used to) go mostly in the morning, before they opened, so almost nobody is ever around.

28. I love reading reviews on websites before I buy things, but never write them myself.

29. There are some things that I don't think twice about before buying them, and then other things that I ponder over for WEEKS without buying them. Like a Loopy phone case. I want one, but I just can't commit...

30. I am a stickler about using my turn signal. I seriously get SO annoyed when people don't tell me if they're changing lanes or turning or not. It bugs me so much.

31. On that note, I'm also a stickler about returning my cart to the cart return.

32. I don't hate doing laundry. I'm great at putting it in the washing machine and even pretty good about moving it to the dryer. But, if there's not another load waiting to move to the dryer, forget about unloading that. The act of unloading the dryer and putting away the clothes is THE worst. Same goes for the dishwasher. I don't mind loading it, but unloading it? Forget about it.

33.  I started this list MONTHS ago. I'm terrible at coming up with one fact on the spot let alone 33! Those ice breaker games that you have to share one interesting fact about yourself kill me. I HATE them.


Can you relate to any of my quirks?


VIP Soccer.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

I've been wanting to enroll Mason in some sort of sport for a while now. Problem is... almost all sports are on Saturdays... when Mason has ABA therapy. His therapist is actually allowed to go anywhere with us that doesn't involve water (i.e. swim lessons) so technically we could have had her come with us to any sporting event, but it seemed silly to waste a session with her just watching him play a sport, so we left the session alone and held off on the sports.

Until... VIP soccer!

My niece plays on the regular AYSO soccer team for her age level and my brother in law is her coach. Seth and I go watch her play often on Saturdays while Mason is at therapy. We were casually talking about soccer one day while over at my brother in law and sister in law's house when my brother in law mentioned that AYSO has a VIP team for kids with special needs. At first I thought Mason would be ok on a regular team, but the more I thought about it, the more I knew he was right. So I inquired about it. Turns out that VIP soccer is on Sundays from 1pm-3pm! Score. I couldn't sign Mason up quick enough. The first game was this past Sunday and it was quite possibly the cutest thing I've ever seen.

The day before (procrastination at it's finest) we went to Dick's Sporting Goods to get Mason some cleats and shin guards. This was all a foreign language to me (I never played sports and neither did my brother) so luckily Seth could help us get what Mason needed. First day, we showed up early and Mason was a little nervous. We had been talking it up for a while and he seemed excited, but once we actually got there, he was a little shy and nervous about what was going to be happening. Together we all walked over to the table with the uniforms, we got his uniform, Seth changed him in to it, and he was all set. He started to warm up to the idea a little more by now and was eager to play.

With the VIP soccer team, the kids play with buddies. These buddies happened to be teenage kid volunteers who were with an organization through the city. A lot of them had previous soccer experience, but it wasn't required. The coaches explained to us that they like to have these teenage buddies for the kids vs just them as coaches because the kids don't feel as intimidated by them and work well with them.

Two buddies introduced themselves to Mason and asked if he wanted to kick the ball around before practice started.

And he was off.
And a love for soccer began.

On this particular day, it was probably 90+ degrees in the sun, but Mason didn't care. He played with the buddies for a bit before all the other kids got there and they started practice. The first hour (from 1pm-2pm) was warm up, drills and learning different skills. They did some jumping jacks, some stretches, and some other warm ups and then things like maneuvering the ball through cones and other foot work skills. The buddies were with the kids the whole time (as were the two coaches), showing them what to do, and keeping them focused on what they were supposed to be doing. Mason did pretty well, but did get distracted a couple times and wanted to switch balls every few minutes (there were TONS and he wanted to try them all lol). His buddy was so patient and calm with him. In fact all the buddies were with all the kids. These volunteers were truly amazing. Not only was it hotter than hot, they weren't getting paid and they were having to handle various challenges of working with kids of ranging special needs. I'm not even kidding when I say that I almost teared up once listening to some of the buddies talking to one of the kids. These kids parents are definitely doing something right.

Hour 2 (from 2pm-3pm) was game time. I use the words "game time" loosely since it hardly resembled a game, but the kids were having. a. blast! Half the kids kept their blue uniforms on and the other half put on a mesh green tank top-like shirt to make themselves the green team. I have no clue what a typical 5-year-old soccer game would look like, but for our game, there were no goalies. The buddies were on the field with the kids, but mainly to help them know which direction to go and to encourage them to run and kick the ball. The buddies never once tried to interfere with the kids game.

Mason LOVED soccer! Like way more than I thought he would. He went from being a little shy and scared in the beginning to wanting to play for forever. They gave the kids water breaks every so often and Mason would literally come over, take a sip, and want to go back out. We had to force him to sit for even a couple seconds to drink more water and then he was off to find his buddy. And at the end of the game, he was SO bummed it was over. Seriously he loved his buddy so much that he went over to help him with clean up and then pouted the whole way to the car and all the way home. Hopefully this excitement carries over in to this Sunday when he has soccer again!

K/1 Combo ----> Kindergarten Only [Week 3]

Thursday, September 7, 2017

When I last left you, I left you with the uncertainty of if Mason would remain in the kindergarten/1st grade combo class or if he would be moved to a kindergarten only class and I'm happy to say that he got moved!

Tuesday, September 5th was Mason's first day in his new class. We prepped him all weekend and explained to him that he'd be going in to a new class come Tuesday and while I think he is still a bit confused (when we ask him who his teacher is, he sometimes still says his old teacher's name), I think he is also excited because a couple of the kids from his after school care are also in that class.

Day 1 and Day 2 at his new class went well! He was super excited to finally be able to hang his backpack outside the classroom on the hooks that we see all the other kids hanging their backpacks on (he used to have to take his in with him and hang them on the other side outside his classroom in the 1st grade wing). He stood in line by himself, with his new classmates, and then teacher came out to walk the kids in to the classroom. I was standing off to the side and he said "bye mommy!" and walked right in like a pro. I stopped to just introduce myself and say hi and point Mason out to her before she went back inside and saw him sitting there with his classmates on the rug waiting for the teacher to come back.

All in all, I think this was the right move and the best move for him. We are very happy about it and can't wait to see how the rest of the school year goes in his new class.


Without getting in to too much detail, the IEP meeting on Friday went WELL. Or in my opinion, it went well. It started out with the principal saying that they thought Mason would do well in the combo class due to his scores on his evaluation last Fall, but due to the fact that table work is not his strong suit and he needs a little extra help and re-direction, they wanted to move him to a kindergarten only class. We fully agreed.

I mentioned that I'd like to get him evaluated for OT (occupational therapy) to help with some fine motor skills delays and they fully agreed. His now 'old teacher' brought in some writing samples and I had his evaluation from his old OT place for reference so they had a good starting point to base the evaluation on.

His now 'old teacher' also mentioned a couple behavioral things that he was doing in class that she wanted noted. During circle time she mentioned that she will ask a question and Mason is always very quick to answer. She said he is very smart and always knows the right answer, but he blurts out the answer, loudly, and doesn't let other kids have a chance to answer. She doesn't want to crush his spirit and his love for learning, but she also needs to let the other kids have a chance to answer also. And then she mentioned something that we'd never experienced before... he's been taking off some clothes in class. Apparently he is either VERY comfortable in her classroom or is seeking some sort of sensory stimulation and takes off his shoes, sometimes socks, and lifts up his shirt. With a simple "Mason, we need to keep all our clothes on in class", he seems to be able to put his shoes back on and be fine with it, but she wanted to have it noted. In addition to that, apparently he got completely undressed at his after school care the other day when he thought he needed to change his clothes because he was wet (an accident or some sort of water spilling). They appreciated the effort, but right next to his cubby is not the best place to change... the bathroom is. One other kid noticed what was going on and alerted the teacher who helped Mason change in an appropriate location. I, personally, think it's just because everything is so new to him. I'm sure it is very overwhelming and over stimulating for him to be in all these new environments, so considering, I think he's doing great. I repeated to him over and over about the appropriate place to get changed and to let his teachers know, so hopefully as time goes on, things settle down and he starts to know more what to do.

I also mentioned that he used to have an ABA therapist with him a couple days week in preschool, but otherwise he was mostly alone. However, there were three teachers there vs just one and a lot less kids, so who knows how much they were re-directing him then. This new class will have an aid, not specifically for Mason, but for some of the other kids, so while they can't focus their attention on him, they can help. The IEP team is also going to be looking in to a behavioral assessment of sorts to see how he is in the classroom and if he needs extra help specific to him.

Again, all things considered, I think Mason has done AMAZING with the transition to kindergarten. There are all new kids, all new teachers, all new school, all new rules, everything is... all new. He didn't cry when he dropped him off on Day 1 (VERY different than Day 1 of preschool or even Month 1 of preschool) and he just exudes this confidence, excitement, and happiness. Starting a new school where you know nobody is overwhelming and scary for even me to think about but he has taken it in stride.

I probably won't update all that often unless something else happens (I'm sure you don't need a week to week play by play πŸ˜‰), but we have parent/teacher conferences in October and then his annual IEP meeting in November as well as a 60 day update IEP meeting in November so more updates will probably come then.

Mason Goes to Kindergarten! [Weeks 1 & 2]

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Mason started kindergarten on Tuesday, August 22nd and I can still hardly believe it. On one hand, I am so, SO proud of my big boy because this is a huge step for him. But on the other hand, I still don't feel old enough and responsible enough to have a child, let alone a kindergartener! Really it is a bittersweet time. But before we get to the first day of school, let's back up one day and start with kindergarten orientation (and a little background).

A little background... when Mason was evaluated last Fall to start services through the school district, they deemed him needing speech services but that was all. He did not qualify for the district's special ed preschool, so we kept him where he was and he got ABA therapy at school two days a week for three hours at a time (through our private insurance). We had an end of school year speech IEP meeting that led us to know of the transition to kindergarten still getting speech services. As of the first day of school, the plan was for him to be in mainstream kindergarten, with no aids, and get pulled out twice a week for 30 minutes each time to get speech services.

You also might remember when I talked about how we moved here (our moving announcement). I thought I actually blogged about WHY we moved, but for some reason I can't find the link to the post, so if I can't find it (maybe I didn't share (???)), I'll be sure to update you on that later. Long story short, this is the school we moved to go to!

Kindergarten orientation was Monday, August 21st at 10am. We were all ready and super excited to really get to see Mason's new school. Though we see it every day since we live practically across the street and we'd been to the soccer fields by the playground to watch our niece play soccer, we still hadn't really toured/seen it before. We arrived slightly before 10am and there were tons of people there. We checked in and got some information about the school. Then the principal started talking and introduced all the kindergarten teachers. Everything was going well until she got to Mason's teacher (they emailed us his teacher's name the night before) and she said she was "teaching a kindergarten/1st grade combo class". I'm sorry, WHAT? Mason is in a combo class?

I was already slightly apprehensive about him being in a mainstream class, alone with no aid, but I had confidence that he would do well and was excited that he would be with all the other kids. I mean he was in preschool most of the day with no aid and he was fine (though I guess I didn't really know how much his teachers were doing and how much he just behaved on his own). But then we found this out and I really didn't know what to think. Would he do better because it might be more structured with more table work? But he hates table work and has a very short attention span for it? Would he do better because he would have the older kids to "mentor" him? Is he still going to learn all the things that they learn in kindergarten? Is he going to get the kindergarten experience or is he going to be treated like a 1st grader? TONS of questions went through my mind.

We were then broken off in to groups based on teacher and we had a chance to meet Mason's teacher. She seemed SUPER nice, but... super overwhelmed... because she JUST found out on FRIDAY (3 days before school started) that she was teaching a combo class. Apparently there had been a major influx of students enrolling last minute (there were actually some people asking WHEN did school start and could they enroll on the day we went for orientation) and they had to add some classes. They added a TK class last minute (aka Friday) and split up Mason's teacher's 1st grade only class (what she was prepared for) into a combo class. The poor lady was SO, SO sweet, but so overwhelmed too. So, after meeting her for a few minutes and then taking a tour of the school, we headed to Target to pick up a few extra school supplies that she asked for and then home. I was feeling all the emotions and didn't really know what to think about how school was going to go the next day.

That night also happened to be Back to School Night which I thought we were supposed to go to, but it turns out that it was just for grades 1-5. I had texted a few people, posted about it on Instagram, cried (#justbeinghonest), and ultimately Seth and I decided that he would go back to the school that night to talk to the teacher and just give her a little background on Mason and how he has autism and how while he IS potty trained, he needs some reminders of when to go, etc. We just didn't want her to be blindsided on the first day or think he was acting out. So, Seth went back, I stayed home with Mason, and when he got home, I felt SO much better. The teacher was so thankful that he talked to her and was excited to meet Mason the next day. She also said she would see how Week 1 went and then speak to the other kindergarten teachers, the special education teacher, and the principal and they would decide if her class was the best fit for Mason or if they should move him to a traditional kindergarten classroom.

Day 1! Day 1 Seth and I both took off work so we could be there to walk Mason to school. He was SO excited and happily obliged my picture taking requests :) We got his lunch all packed up, got his back pack ready to go, and we were on our way. All the kids line up in lines outside their teachers classrooms but because Mason's classroom is technically a 1st grade class and on the other side of the hall, he lines up with another class. So when it was our turn, we all got to walk through the kindergarten room and across the hall to his classroom. His name was on the desk and he was sitting at a big table with 3 other kids. We hung his backpack on the hooks outside the classroom, I took some pictures, told him to have a good day, and Seth and I both said goodbye and we walked out of the class. We were going to drop off his lunch at his after school care when I turned around and saw his little head peeking out from behind the hallway. He had gotten out of his classroom! We motioned for him to go back and he did. And then he came out again. And we motioned again. And he came out AGAIN and then I thought I was going to lose it. I hadn't cried yet and was actually ok, but now I was terrified that if we actually left then he would get out and get lost. So I walked back, told him to go to his seat, and told the door monitor that he was ok, but he kept getting up, and to please watch and make sure he didn't get out. I walked away and sure enough, there he was again. I walked back and told the teacher and she said that the door would be closing soon (there was a little boy crying which was why it was still open) and would he be ok then and I said yes. I ended up dropping his lunch off and Seth stayed to watch and make sure Mason didn't come out again. I think he could tell I was on the brink of tears. So I dropped off his lunch and met Seth outside and everything was ok.

Seth and I ended up going to breakfast at this place that we've been wanting to try for FOREVER and had a Bloody Mary (him) and a mimosa (me) and the BEST breakfast I've ever had to celebrate being kid free. We then went to Disneyland for a few hours and then went to pick up Mason. Why did we send him to the after school care if we were both off that day? 1. He would be going on Tuesdays and I wanted him to get used to the routine. 2. We pay for it and 3. Adult day at Disney! But in all seriousness, he had a BLAST that day and didn't want to leave and come home.

All in all, Day 1 was a success! We ended the night with an ice cream date with the cousins and Mason falling asleep on the couch. Kindergarten, I love you!

Day 2 went smoothly. Seth went to work and I walked Mason to school alone. We met a little boy who lives in our complex who is in 5th grade who happened to recognize us from kindergarten orientation on Monday (he and his dad were running one of the booths) and he walked with us until we split off to go our respective ways. Today's drop off was a little different in the fact that the parents didn't get to walk the kids inside. The hall monitor came to meet the kids and then all walked in a line over to their classroom. It was so surreal seeing Mason just walk off, alone, without me, on his way, knowing exactly where to go. I seriously was beaming with pride. He is growing up right before my very eyes and I am so proud of how independent and confident he is. This morning I also happened to start chatting with a couple of the moms and we talked about our feelings on our kids being in a combo class.

Mason's teacher uses this app to stay in contact with the parents, to pass along any messages or reminders, and she uses it to post pictures. I absolutely love this part and LOVE seeing Mason playing and interacting with his peers. She sent a couple photos on the first day of school as well, one of the whole class and one of just his tablemates, and it made me feel so happy and so much more at ease.

The night of Day 3, we got an email from Mason's teacher saying that he was having trouble focusing on his table work. This came as no surprise to us since table work is one of his least preferred activities to do. She asked if he had any preferred books or quiet activities that we could send to try to keep him focused. Since he generally hates table work, I didn't have much to go off of, but I sent some books I knew he liked on Friday and then asked his therapist on Saturday and his old preschool teacher if they had any advice. They each had some advice, which I later passed along.

Day 4 was Friday and Seth's day to pick Mason up at school. (He had been going to the after school care from Tuesday-Thursday and was LOVING IT. He transitioned well and had no problem with one of the after school care workers coming to pick him up when school was over. There are several kids who go there after school and I think he was just happy to be with his friends. They feed him the lunch that I packed and then they play, have a snack, and play some more. What's not to love?) Anyway, Friday was Daddy's day to pick Mason up and while he was excited that Daddy was there, he was less than thrilled that he wasn't going to play with his friends at daycare so he pouted the whole walk home. LOL! It didn't last long though because Seth treated Mason to McDonald's for lunch and he was all smiles again. Once I got home, we ran some errands, and went out to dinner to celebrate a successful first week!

I won't bore you with day to day details of Week 2, but it has gone really well also. Mason is supposed to be getting speech two days a week in elementary school and I didn't think that it had started yet, so I popped in to the office to get the name of the speech teacher to contact her and check in. They left a message for her and we chatted a bit and she said he should start receiving speech last week (Week 2). She also mentioned that she wanted to set up an IEP meeting with me and Seth at the end of the week to go over some stuff. The first IEP meeting I was insanely nervous, but this one I was oddly excited for. I had a couple things I wanted to talk about but I was also excited to hear what they have in store for Mason as well.

And with that, I'll leave you with the anticipation of if Mason is still in a combo class or if he got moved to a regular kindergarten only class... Stay tuned!